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close this bookAction Against Child Labour (ILO; 2000; 356 pages)
View the documentPreface
Open this folder and view contents1. National policies and programmes
Open this folder and view contents2. Towards improved legislation
Open this folder and view contents3. Improving the knowledge base on child labour
Open this folder and view contents4. Alternatives to child labour
Open this folder and view contents5. Strategies to address child slavery
Open this folder and view contents6. Strategies for employers and their organizations
Open this folder and view contents7. Trade unions against child labour
close this folder8. Awareness-raising
Open this folder and view contentsINTRODUCTION
close this folder8.1 THE MESSAGE
View the document"Action against child labour can be taken now"
View the document"Prioritize the most harmful, often invisible, forms of child labour"
View the document"Positive action and international cooperation are needed"
View the document"Tradition cannot justify the exploitation of children"
View the document"Prevention is better than cure"
View the document8.2 THE AUDIENCE
View the document8.3 MEANS OF COMMUNICATION
View the document8.4 THE NEED FOR A COMMUNICATION STRATEGY
View the documentAppendix 8.1 Informing the public
View the documentAppendix 8.2 Popular theatre as an effective communications tool
Open this folder and view contents9. Action by community groups and NGOs
Open this folder and view contents10. Resources on child labour
View the documentOther ILO publications
View the documentBack Cover
 

"Prioritize the most harmful, often invisible, forms of child labour"

Export industries are a highly visible sector in which children work. Footballs made by children in Pakistan for children in industrialized countries and adults in World Cup matches may be a compelling symbol. But in fact, only a very small percentage of child workers are employed in export-sector industries - probably less than 5 per cent - and tens of millions of children around the world work in non-export areas, often in hazardous or exploitative work or working conditions.

A study in Bangladesh, for example, revealed that children were active in more than 300 economic activities. These ranged from household work to brick-making, from stone-breaking to selling in shops and on streets, from bicycle-repair to garbage-collecting and rag-picking, and jobs in the informal sector. This assessment took into account only jobs done in cities. A total of 39 occupations were rated as hazardous for children.1 Such a range of work by children is found in many countries.

1 W. Rahman: Hazardous child labour in Bangladesh (Dhaka, Government of Bangladesh, 1996), pp. 2, 3.

The message needs to get through to the media that, worldwide, the overall majority of children work on farms and plantations or in private homes, far from the reach of labour inspectors and media scrutiny. Many children labour in virtual invisibility, doing dangerous work.

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