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Strengthening the Role of International Labour Standards in Selected Developing Member Countries: Integrative Paper for the Child Labour Component

The goal of the paper is to explore ways wherein ADB can assist governments and civil society organizations to mainstream elimination of child labour in national policies and programs. The reason why children work is due to economic condition of the household. Poverty, unemployment among adults, low purchasing power and lack of credit and alternative sources of funds make families unable to finance their children’s schooling and or force them and their children to supplement household income or to sustain the children’s subsistence needs. Child labor leads to a reduction in human capital and reduction in skilled and educated labour, a reduction in healthy and productive labour, and a reduction in the quality of the labour force by reducing socialization and interpersonal skills. High incidence and prevalence of child labour leads to massive productivity and efficiency losses in the medium and long term. Holistic and Integrated Area-Based Approaches 1. Providing child domestic workers with opportunities for education. Employers are encouraged to support the education of their domestic workers and teachers are trained to be aware of and responsive to the special circumstances and needs. 2. Establishing linkages with other government and non-government institutions and organization greatly facilitated the effort to protect and assist child domestic workers. 3. Churches with their apostolate programs provides values education to child domestic workers and their employers and make their facilities available for meetings, education and skills training, and recreational activities. The area-based approaches are one of the strategies to be combined with the sectoral and thematic approaches under the time-bound programme. It is also suggested that the social assistance of any social protection strategy should include: targeting of areas and sectors prone to child labour; and identifying, monitoring, rescuing and rehabilitating child labourers as essential key components. It is noted that anti-poverty and child labour programs and associated policies also require significant financial resources--this will help ease the child labour problem, especially during crisis and recession periods. External and international aspects of the child labour problem should be always considered. It is also important to look at the institutions and governance structures. It must be emphasized that the success or failure of significantly eradicating child labour and its worst forms critically depends not only on the related programs and policies, but on the quality and efficiency of institutions and governance structures as well as the political will, dedication and commitment of both government and civil society to achieve this social and national goal.


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