Annually, June 12 marks the World Day Against Child Labor. The website of the International Labour Organization (ILO) notes: "The most recent global estimates suggest some 120 million children between the ages of 5 and 14 are involved in child labour, with boys and girls in this age group almost equally affected. This persistence of child labour is rooted in poverty and lack of decent work for adults, lack of social protection, and a failure to ensure that all children are attending school through to the legal minimum age for admission to employment." Read the full 2015 ILO report here.
Nowhere is child labor more prevalent than in the garment industry. Reports have shown that in Bangladesh 10% of all children between the ages of 5 and 14 work, while 6.8% of 7- to 14-year-olds combine work and school. Activists have been turning up the pressure on multinational clothing manufacturers to respond to these conditions, particularly since the Rama Plaza disaster that occurred on April 24, 2013, near Dhaka in Bangladesh. The tragedy killed over 1,000 people in the eight-story building collapse.
Image courtesy of ILO.
Want to take a stand against child labor? Organize a screening of The True Cost in your community to learn more. Then check your labels. Where were your clothes made and under what conditions? Ask the brands you wear these questions and keep up the pressure on them to stop using child labor in the textile industry.
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