Especially vulnerable groups
Although a policy on child labour should aim at the abolition of all child labour, flagrant cases of child abuse require priority attention. That is why IPEC participating countries have started to place priority on children that are particularly vulnerable.
In the June 1999 session of the International Labour Conference, ILO member States adopted a new Convention concerning immediate action for the elimination of the worst forms of child labour (see Chapter 2, section 2.4). The worst forms of child labour which should be eliminated as a priority, are:
The difficulties in identifying and locating the children in such situations needs to be recognized: often they are deliberately held captive, isolated and with no access to information and services. In addition, there remain many ambiguities in defining hazardous work. While it is fairly easy to agree on child labour which constitutes a serious violation of human rights, it may be more difficult to define the particularly dangerous occupations and industries. There are, in fact, countless work situations that are liable to seriously harm the physical integrity of children (underground work in mines, work in the construction industry, handling pesticides and so on). In other instances, the work is not intrinsically hazardous but becomes so as a result of the poor conditions under which it is carried out (intense heat or cold, dust and fumes, long working hours, and sexual or other harassment).
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