Washington, DC – The Child Labor Coalition (CLC), a group of 34 organizations dedicated to fighting exploitative child labor, is celebrating the awarding of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to Kailash Satyarthi and Malala Yousafzai—two tireless and courageous advocates for the universal education of children and child rights. For the past 25 years, the CLC has worked closely with Satyarthi, who has freed tens of thousands of child slaves, to reduce child labor around the world.
“Last week, a true champion in the fight to end child labor was rightfully recognized by the international community,” said Sally Greenberg, CLC co-chair and executive director of the National Consumers League. “The number of child workers worldwide continues to decrease, and we must thank tireless advocates like Kailash Satyarthi for championing this effort. Satyarthi has committed his life to ensuring that children have access to education and a childhood. Satyarthi’s efforts have helped pull millions of children out of child labor and given these children new opportunity and hope.”
“There are no two people more deserving of the Nobel Peace Prize than Pakistan’s Malala Yousafzai and India’s Kailash Satyarthi,” said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), also an organizational co-chair of the CLC. “Their courageous efforts in fighting for universal education and protecting children from exploitation and abuse are making our world a better place for generations to come. The right to an education is too often taken for granted. Malala and Kailash’s work reminds us that much still needs to be accomplished to ensure that all children, regardless of gender, family income, religion or homeland, are able to go to school and have the chance to reach their God-given potential.”
“The Nobel Prize is a fitting tribute to Kailash’s years of selfless dedication and vision,” said Dr. Lorretta Johnson, a CLC’s co-chair and AFT’s secretary-treasurer. “We have made much progress together, but in many ways our work has far to go. We look forward to continuing to stand with Kailash in the fight against hazardous labor, modern-day slavery, and human trafficking as we strive to achieve quality education for the world’s children.”