According to ILAB, in 2000, nearly four million children between the ages of 7 and 14 years were working in Brazil, roughly 1 in 7 children in this age group.

CLC Co-Chair Dr. Lorretta Johnson’s Plenary Speech at the Brazil Child Labor Conference

Dr. Johnson (far right) pictured here with CLC members Jackie Starr, Norma Flores Lopez, Judy Gearhart, and Reid Maki (left to right)

Child labor advocates from around the world were allowed to give four-minute plenary speeches during the 2013 Brazil Child Labor conference. Three members of the CLC gave speeches: Dr. Lorretta Johnson, Judy Gearhart, and Jo Becker. The latter two will be posted here in the coming days.

Hello, everyone! My name is Dr. Lorretta Johnson, secretary-treasurer for the American Federation of Teachers.

I’m also co-chair for the Child Labor Coalition, an organization dedicated to stopping the exploitation of children in the workforce around the world.

Today, as we all know, millions of children are being pushed, pulled, prodded, or worse into the labor force.

There are children making bricks under the searing sun in Pakistan…

There are children who manufacture clothing in dangerous factories over in Bangladesh…

There are children who are forced to pick cotton in Uzbekistan…

There are children forced to perform as sex workers in places like Thailand, the Philippines, and Cambodia…

And even in the United States, we have hundreds of thousands of children being exploited as farmworkers and agricultural labor.

At the American Federation of Teachers, we believe every child deserves a future. We believe in a quality education for all children, regardless of where you live or who you are.

It’s the great equalizer.

But that path starts with early childhood education programs and effective community schools…

It does not start with forced labor!

Read more

Conflict and Economic Downturn Cause Global Increase in Reported Child Labor Violations- 40% of Countries now rated ‘extreme risk’ by Maplecroft

Brazil, China, India, Indonesia and Philippines expose companies to high levels of supply chain risk

An annual study by risk analysis firm Maplecroft has revealed that 76 countries now pose ‘extreme’ child labour complicity risks for companies operating worldwide, due to worsening global security and the economic downturn. This constitutes an increase of more than 10% from last year’s total of 68 ‘extreme risk’ countries.

The Child Labour Index 2012 evaluates the frequency and severity of reported child labour incidents in 197 countries. Worryingly, nearly 40% of all countries have been classified as ‘extreme risk’ in the index, with conflict torn and authoritarian states topping the ranking. Myanmar, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan are ranked joint first, while DR Congo (5), Zimbabwe (6), Afghanistan (7), Burundi (8), Pakistan (9) and Ethiopia (10) round off the worst performers.

The Child Labour Index has been developed by Maplecroft to evaluate the extent of country-level child labour practices and the performance of governments in preventing child labour and ensuring the accountability of perpetrators. By doing so, the index enables companies to identify risks of children being employed within their supply chains in violation of the standards on minimum age of employment. The index also analyses the risk of the involvement of children in work, the conditions of which could have a negative impact on the health, safety and wellbeing of child labourers.

Maplecroft suggests that the global increase in the use of child labour is mainly caused by a deteriorating human security situation worldwide. This has resulted in increased numbers of internally displaced children and refugees who, together with children from minority communities, continue to be the groups at most risk of economic exploitation. Sub-Saharan Africa is identified as the region posing the most risk in this respect but most of the growth economies have their own unique conditions in respect of child labour and its remediation. Read more

More than 1 million Children ages 10 to 14 still Forced by Poverty to work in Brazil

By Associated Press

SAO PAULO — A newspaper says that despite the economic advances achieved by Brazil over the past few years, children from low-income families are still forced to work in Latin America’s biggest country.

The Folha de S.Paulo newspaper says Wednesday that its analysis of preliminary 2010 census figures compiled by Brazil’s government statistics agency shows that more than 1 million children between the ages of 10 and 14 were working last year.

0The newspaper says that many cases of child labor are difficult to eradicate because most of them involve work as domestic help or on small family farms in remote regions.… Read the rest

Child Labor in Brazil, an Overview Article

Press Release: Council on Hemispheric Affairs
Made in Brazil: Confronting Child Labor

by COHA Research Associate Sonja Salzburger

“To force a child to work is to steal the future of that child” – Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva1

While Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has made significant efforts to reduce child labor, at the end of his tenure the issue still remains urgent. Forging a successful strategy to reduce child labor is not a simple task, since the reasons behind it are deeply embedded in the country’s economic and social structure.

In 2004, President Lula, who himself began to work at the age of eleven, declared fighting child labor a high priority.2 Although Brazil is often regarded as a positive example for other Latin American countries for its progress in the fight against child labor, more than four million Brazilian children between the ages of 5 and 17 are still working.3 Especially in the poorer northeastern part of the country, many children have no choice but to become integrated into the illegal job market.… Read the rest