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Publication Detail
SU 1999-01: Labor Force Participation of Children in Selected Fishing Villages in Negros Oriental

In the last decade or so, the phenomenon of child labor has grown to worrying proportions. A survey of the United Nations Labor Agency indicate that 73 million children between the ages of 10-14 work as child laborers. The report singled out Asia as the worst area for working children, where 44.6 million works in a different occupational sectors. In order to assess the extent of children’s participation in the labor force in this country, this study documents the experiences of child workers from selected fishing villages in Negros Oriental in commercial fishing industry. In addressing this issue, this study probes social, economic, and cultural conditions underlying the phenomenon of child labor and examines the factors that impel children to seek gainful employment despite their tender age. The three case studies in this report not only provide a grim picture of exploitation and abuse child workers experience at their place of work but also uncover the insidious process of recruitment, including the complicitous involvement not only of government agencies charged to protect children, but of parents themselves who are driven mainly by desperate economic situation. Recommendations include the launching of an awareness campaign for the protection of children’s rights among the children’s own families; the call not just for strengthening but specially for the implementation of legal measures against recruiters and companies hiring children for labor; and, the introduction of more relevant programs into the curriculum aimed at minimizing drop-out rate as well as providing alternative opportunities for drop-outs and school-leavers. The findings of this study provide support for the premise that if human beings have to effective in their care of the earth and their participation in environmental protection, they must be engaged in the protection of their own children from exploitation and abuse.

Silliman University
Authors Keywords
Abregana, Betty C.; labor force; child labor; commercial fishing; environmental protection; employment; abuse;
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