What is child labour:
Any child under the age specified by law worldwide works full time, mentally or physically to earn for
own survival or adding to family income, that interrupts child’s social development and education is called “child
labour”. Any child under the age of 15 engaged in activity to feed family or self is “child
labour”. ILO Convention 138 (C. 138) obligates countries to fix a minimum age for employment that should not be less
than the age for completing compulsory schooling and, in any event, should not be less than 15 years. Developing countries
may set the minimum age at 14. C-138 provides flexibility for countries to establish a younger minimum age of 12 or 13 for
children to partake in “light work.” Definitions by:
participation in economic activity- that does not negatively affect their health and development or interfere with
education, can be positive. Work that does not interfere with education (light work) is permitted from the age
of 12 years under the International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention 138. So child engaged in part time work to learn
practical skill linked to social or inherited custom or crafts is not child labor. It becomes “child labour” only
when child weaves carpet in a factory; earns money to support family without schooling, social development. On the other hand
if child works for 3-4 hours to learn or earn for self or parents after schooling, would not be known as child labour as is
additional education and practical skill that a child learns.
Definition of elements
of worst forms of child labour- all types of slavery, forceful hiring of children, commercial and sexual exploitation
of children, hard working condition.
Types of child labour- Self employed and employed
with others are two categories of child labour: • Self employed- street sellers, rag or scrap pickers, street entertainers,
child prostitution or pornography (but mostly they are hired by notorious gangs), begging, and other odd jobs. These types
of children are mainly street children and rural migrants. Most these children are parentless, abandoned by parents, riot
or war misery. The situation changes; in poor countries they are helping hand to the parents. • Employed with others-
factory or mine workers, domestic servants, child prostitution or pornography. Conducting work in other’s premises or
in other’s custody. Such children work with parents consent or are parentless. Some are sold or some work to help parents
to meet livelihood.
With the change of world order future education system would be
more practical than present system of theory from books and notebooks. Each child would be encouraged to involve in practical
education that gives skill to survive in competitive world. So, defining “education” becomes important to define
“child labour”. Thus any child works for pleasure, leisure, pocket money, helping parents, hobby, aspiration,
non hazardous part time work is not “child labour”. “Child labour” purely counts when child is forced
to work under slavery, poverty, parentless or social or parent’s boycott.
explained are my opinion may not be accurate)
Labor law guide:- Discover the magical world of labors and read all our quality reviews and
Nearly 90% (in my view) of migrant child laborers
are rural children who migrate to cities and end up begging, prostitution, domestic helpers, or other odd jobs. Child
labour issue can not be dealt until and unless concerned organizations influence appropriate Governments to reevaluate the
economic policies and rural economic growth. Till now rural economy is only known as agricultural economy and never emphasized
on add-on value products. Governments have to consider growing and generating rural employment. Target set for 2015 to eradicate
poverty may not be achieved until we understand roots and real causes of poverty. Why child goes to work? This situation
is most urgent to be taken care!!! Child goes to work only when parents allow. And why parents seek own child's support to
sustain home economy? This is what in my opinion Governments need to understand and bring policies in accordance. Arresting
child labor in factories have opened many sectors for them to get involved specially in flesh trade, begging, street entertainment,
pick pocketing and robbery etc. Law is effective as long as resources are open
to children for education and for parents earn at least minimum to run a home. Law can only make this situation illegal but
help is less towards reform to eliminate child labor. http://www.sadashivan.com/ (Child labour and society)
In the United States, The US Department of Justice
estimates the numbers to be between 100,000 and 3 million. These figures include children involved in prostitution, child
pornography and who have been trafficked into the United States. ECPAT International
Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children is on the rise see
links to the report:-
In Sri Lanka - According to media and NGOs, nearly
100,000 Children are involved in child prostitution in Sri Lanka. According to various media and specialised organisations,
it is estimated that there is a minimum of 150,000 child labourers in Sri Lanka. Ilankai Tamil Sangam (Sangam.org).
In Brazil - Brazilian Center for Childhood and Adolescence
(CBIA) has recently estimated that there are about 500,000 girls who have turned to prostitution to earn a living. Some of
these girls are as young as nine years old. pangaea.org-CHILD PROSTITUTION ON THE RISE IN BRAZIL
In world (ILO) - The International Labor Organization
estimates that more than 2 million children under age 18 are involved in prostitution, half of them in Asia and 300,000 in
the United States. Americans account for 80 percent of world arrests involving child sex tourism.graphic.pepperdine.edu-Child prostitution
crisis surges worldwide.
(Newint.org) Street children, the facts - Who are these children?:- The usual image is of young homeless people who live and work on
the streets. But it is better to think of street children in terms of their relationship to the street. Some come from street
families. Others live mainly on the street but may go back to the family home in the evenings or make sporadic visits. Yet
others sleep in night shelters.
Nearly 40 - 50% children among working-children are street
survive by begging, stealing, shoe polish, street performance,
collecting scraps, street selling and other. Some, particularly girls, get involved into the
sex trade. The majority are on the streets in developing countries, mainly as
a direct result of poverty mainly migrants from rural villages. They migrate
with their parents and get involved into odd jobs as a result of worst
economical condition of parents. And some percentage come alone to urban
cities due to bad environment in their own village home.
Major percentage of such children get addicted to use of
drugs. Urban children who indulge as street children are 10% to 20% owing to
family economical condition or unpleasant environment.
Aggressive Movies and TV channel environment
too has contributed spoiling children to source money through ugly street
jobs for drug addiction, become street children. Also friend circle or family
alcoholic habit stimulates children to taste such life. Worst distressed are
girls who are either sold to pimps or are sent for garbage collection, street
performance or street begging. In developing countries, girl child is
considered as disgrace in poor illiterate orthodox uncivilized families.
Nearly half of street beggars and garbage collectors are girl children. (Only
my views observing and contacting urban and rural street children, may
not be accurate)
Definitions street children by UNICEF, defines street children into two main categories:
1. Children on the street are those engaged in some kind of economic activity ranging from begging to vending.
Most go home at the end of the day and contribute their earnings to their family. They may be attending school and retain
a sense of belonging to a family. Because of the economic
fragility of the family, these children may eventually opt for a
permanent life on the streets.
2. Children of the street actually live on the street (or outside of
a normal family environment). Family ties may exist but are tenuous and
are maintained only casually or occasionally.
Estimates vary but one often-cited figure is that the number of
children living independently in the streets totals between 100 million
and 150 million worldwide, and it is forecasted that - by 2020 – the
number will increase to 800 million.
Street children facts and figure
Britannica) :- An estimated 100 million children and youths between the ages
of 5 and 18 spend the major part of their lives in the city streets of the
less developed world. Most of these "street children," as they have come to
be known, work "on" the street. They live at home but are forced into the
streets to contribute to their families' meagre incomes in whatever way they
can: by shining shoes.
Britannica Ultimate DVD-ROM or CD-ROM 2007
apa.org-Facts and figures
- Ten to 30 million children worldwide are orphaned and must support
themselves by working, begging, stealing, selling sex and trafficking illicit
substances. Estimates say that up to 90 percent of these street children use substances of one kind or another. The initial
use of a
substance among street children is known to be as early as age 5.
U.S. Congress Cites Growing World Problem of "Street Children":-
More than 100 million children worldwide are living hand-to-mouth, bereft of family and homes, and are "particularly vulnerable
to abuse" in countries as wide-ranging as Uganda,
Zimbabwe, Brazil and the Philippines,
Representative Christopher Smith, chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Africa Subcommittee said September 13.
between 32,000 and 52,000 children known as "night commuters" travel from war-torn areas of Uganda "each night to urban
avoid abduction by the Lord's Resistance Army," a rebel movement that has battled the central government for more than 10
Democratic Republic of Congo, Denehy said, "between 25,000 and 50,000 child refugees, war orphans and other children,
widely perceived to be street thugs, are accused of witchcraft or sorcery.
They live on the streets throughout the country, and engage in petty crime, begging and/or prostitution."
For Africa, Alton gave the following figures for street children: Kenya, 250,000; Ethiopia, 150,000; Zimbabwe, 12,000.
And he said that many street children have been forced to serve as child soldiers, suffering death or terrible wounds.
In the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), he said, the United Nations estimates that 30,000 children under the age of
12 are under arms, making up 10 percent of the armed groups in the region.
At the same time, Alton said, "20,000 children are believed to live on the streets in the DRC capital, Kinshasa."
number of street children in Delhi: 150,000 estimate [BBC; Sep
Street children: the facts(findarticles.com):-
South Africa-250,000 nationwide. Gambia - 45% of street children say they have been beaten on the street. Snapshots from
Asia (9) - 150
million children work in the Asia Pacific area--104 million of them in hazardous forms of child labour. Asia has traditionally
had high numbers of children on the streets.
Bangladesh - Over 445,000; 75% of them in Dhaka. The numbers of boys and girls are almost evenly split. India - 11 million;
Mumbai, Delhi and Calcutta each have over 100,000.
China - 300,000, of whom half also sleep on the streets.
Visible and yet invisible - Street children(kindernothilfe.org):- The expression "street children" describes three different groups of girls
* Children who work in the street during the day, but live with their families.
* Children who work in the street during the week and go back to their families only at the weekend because their workplace
is far from their homes.
* Children who have no longer contact to their families. They live and work in the street. Approximately 80 million children
belong to the last group. Many of them live in the cities of Latin America.. The youngest are only five years old. It is very
difficult to collect exact figures but experts assume that the number of street children will continue to rise. This is based
on the fact that more and more people are migrating from the country to cities. Soon every sixth resident of a city will be
younger than eighteen.
Colombia is a country traditionally associated with street children. The image of dirty and hungry children sleeping in
cardboard boxes or under bridges has become a regrettably familiar one.
The most reliable figures are from local city surveys: In 1999, 5,000 children where said to be living in the streets.
Today the figure has risen to 30,000, a number validated by both the Colombian government (ICBF) and UNICEF.
kievstreetkids.org-Street children Statistics:-
In the United States there is a crisis situation and Federal Government revealed that there are about 500,000 under-age
runaways and 'throw-aways'. ("New York Times", 5 February 1990)
Worldwide At least 100 million children worldwide are believed to live at least part of the time on the streets. . .
These street children are first and foremost working children. (UNICEF, 29 March 1994). United Kingdom
According to a 'Crisis' report half of the beggars on our streets spent their childhood in care and a quarter slept on the
streets before they were 16. ("IDEA" Magazine of the Evangelical Alliance, January 1995). Nearly 100,000 young people
go missing in Britain each year. (The Children's Society, "Young runaways", 1989)
click for video.Children performing roadside circus and earn to support parents