World Day Against Child Labour 2021: Current Theme, History and Significance of the day
World Day Against Child Labour 2021:
The world child labour day is observed on 12th June every year and this year the global platform is urged to be united against child labour and human trafficking even more considering the alarming rate of its rise.
It was reported by UNICEF and International Labour Organization (ILO) this year that the number of children in child labour has risen to 160 million across the world. This is an increase of 8.4 million children in the last four years.
Due to COVID-19 pandemic, this year, the celebration of the day is via virtual campaign.
World Day Against Child Labour was introduced in 2002 by the International Labour Organisation. The day provides an opportunity and urges the need to generate an environment for children to grow and live a dignified life and also to fight against child labour throughout the world.
Poverty is one of the main reasons for child labour because of which children are forced to left their school and opt for minimal jobs to support their parents for their livelihood. Moreover, some are forced into child labour by organised crime rackets.
The Day not only focuses on the suitable environment required for the children to grow and prosper but also provide an opportunity to gain support from governments, civil society, schools, youth, women's groups and media to participate in the campaign against child labour.
World Day against Child Labour 2021: Theme
The theme of this year's World Day Against Child Labour is: "Act now: end child labour." This theme has been included because COVID-19 pandemic has pushed millions towards poverty and child labour is directly linked to it.
The theme of World Against Child Labour 2020 was "Protect children from child labour, now more than ever". Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the resulting economic and labour market have a huge impact on the lives of people and livelihoods. Unfortunately, children are often the first to suffer.
The theme of World Day against Child Labour 2019 was “Children shouldn’t work in fields, but on dreams”. The theme focuses on the development of the children working in agriculture sector throughout the world. As around 152 million children are still in child labour. And it is said that in almost every sector child labour exists but seven out of every ten is in agriculture. The International Labour Organisation (ILO) celebrates 100 years in 2019 in promoting social justice and decent work for children through Anti Child Labour Day.
Let us tell you that The International Labour Organisation (ILO) launched the World against Child Labour Day in 2002 to focus attention against child labour and the action or work needed to eliminate it. It also looks forward towards the UN Sustainable Development Goal Target 8.7 which was set by the international community to make an end to child labour by 2025.
This day also focuses on the ratification of the protocol of 2014 to the Forced labour Convention to protect the rights of adults as well as children.
The theme for World Day against Child Labour 2018 was "Generation safe and Healthy".
The theme for World Day against Child Labour 2017 was "In conflicts and disasters, protect children from child labour”.
The theme for World Day against Child Labour 2016 was “End child labour in supply chains – It’s everyone’s business!”
The theme for World Day against Child Labour 2015 was "NO to child labour – YES to quality education!”.
World Day Against Child Labour: History
In 1919, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) was established to promote social justice and to set up an International Labour Standards. Let us tell you that the ILO has 187 member states. The Kingdom of Tonga, a South Pacific island nation, became the 187th member State of the International Labour Organization (ILO). Since then, the ILO has passed several conventions to improve the conditions of labour across the globe. Not only this, but also provides guidelines on matters like wages, working hours, favourable environment etc.
In 1973, ILO convention number 138 was adopted and focused on the minimum age for employment. It aims the member states to raise the minimum age of employment and to abolish child labour. In 1999, the ILO convention number 182 was adopted and was also known as "Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention". It aims to take necessary and immediate action to eliminate the worst form that is child labour.
What constitutes Child Labour?
According to the International Labour Organisation, child labour is "work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity and that is harmful to physical and mental health". That is such type of work that deprives the children of their right to education and dignified living. ILO also says that child labour is such type of work which have physically, mentally and socially consequences on the children and damages them in some or the other way. In fact, any type of work that stops children to take school education is also child labour. It is categorised into three forms: work that deprives the children of the opportunity to attend school, work that forced a child to leave school at an early age and work that requires children to attend school but with the heavy workload.
World Day Against Child Labour: Significance
This day mainly focus on the children development and it protects the right of education and dignified life for the children. Therefore, it is important to achieve the Sustainable development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 as propagated by the UN. Several organisations, ILO etc. are making efforts to curb the child labour. But we should also be responsible and take our duties to help in eliminating child labour. It is correctly said that the child that comes out of child labour comes to know his or her potential and self-worth. They began to enjoy life, human rights and live a dignified life. No doubt such children will also contribute to the economic and social growth of the country and also of the world. Children are the future of the country, isn’t it!
Some Facts about Child Labour
According to the UN,
- Around 152 million children between the ages of 5-17 were in child labour and almost half of them that is around 73 million are in hazardous child labour.
- Almost 48% victims of child labour were aged 5-11, 28% were 12-14 years old and 24% were 15-17 years old.
Stop Child Labour, Protect the right of children, educate them, and support them!