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Publication Detail
CHL 2002-06: Child Labour in the Sugar Plantations: A Cursory Assessment

In the sugar cane plantation and production, child labour is involved only in the cane growing phase. But it is in this phase where most workers are involved. In this phase, the children, side by side the more numerous adult workers, grow canes, harvest and haul them up the trucks. Sugar cane child workers work at a minimum of two days and a maximum of six days. The schoolers work two days in a week while non-schoolers work six days straight. Most child workers get PhP50-PhP60 per day. Some younger children receive only PhP20-PhP30 and this is handed over by the kapatas/cabo (foreman) to their parents. There have been efforts to alleviate the plight of the grossly deprived families of the sugar workers by various sectors since the 1970s. NGOs help in organizing the workers for a more militant confrontation with the planters, millers and refiners. Church and government have had their share of trying to uplift the poor working people by means of education, health care and other social services. But all these have not been sufficient to achieve the avowed objectives. It was only with the advent of the CRC-inspired GOs, NGOs and POs that the working children in the sugar lands begin to be a target of special concern. Their work consists of awareness-raising, organizing and capability-building for action and participation among the working children, youth and parents. A growing number of them are now aware of their rights and are expressive and assertive of such rights. The author emphasizes the sustainability of these efforts towards producing well organized leaders of the future who know their rights and can express them well through public presentation and the like. Lastly, he calls for networking and partnership-building with civil society groups and the development of local, regional and national mechanisms for multi-sectoral unity, collaboration and approach to the problem of the worst form of child labour in the industry.

Collection of Studies from Other Institutions
Authors Keywords
Apit, Alejandro W.; child labor;
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