The effort of the international community in the last two decades has withdrawn millions of children from child labour, although the most recent estimates show that 215 million children continue to be victims of child labour throughout the world. Among these, 74 million boys and 41 million girls are subject to the worst forms, which are painful, hazardous or unhealthy activities.
The challenge of eliminating the worst forms of child labour by 2016 demands that this issue remain as a priority in the agenda of governments, workers and employers representations, besides the support of the civil society organizations that work with child protection.
The III Global Conference on Child Labour (GCCL) will be held in Brasilia from October 8to 102013 and will present an opportunity to evaluate the progress made since the adoption of the Convention Number 182 of the International Labour Organization (ILO) concerning the prohibition and immediate action for the elimination of the worst forms of child labour, as well as to propose measures to accelerate action towards the 2016 goal, taking into account the most successful experiences in course in the five continents.
Organized and chaired by the Brazilian Government, the Conference is supported by the ILO and will bring together 193 countries, represented by government, workers and employers’ representatives and civil society organizations, to participate in the activities.
The Conference will be preceded by a broad consultation through the Virtual Platform “Dialogues on Child Labour” (www.childlabourdialogues.org) about countries and social segments contributing to the implementation of measures approved at the II Conference, held in 2010 in The Hague (Netherlands), and consolidated in the “Roadmap for Achieving the Elimination of The Worst Forms of Child Labour”. The Dialogues will be open to various actors involved in this thematic area, including children and adolescents, and will allow for a wide and democratic dialogue over the main challenges for the eradication of the worst forms of child labour. October’s in-person event aims to debate the most controversial themes and find new paths for achieving the elimination goals.
Structured in plenary sessions and thematic panels, the discussions will be based on the four axes of the “Roadmap”: National Legislation and enforcement, Education and training, Social Protection, and Labour Market Policies. The debates should try to find innovative forms to overcome, among other situations, the violation of children rights, the recurrence of child labour in family rural and urban businesses and the domestic child work. Besides that, discussion will take place in order to share the co-responsibility of large productive chains in hiring children in segments of its production and to understand how the theme is understood by indigenous peoples and traditional communities. Challenges and strategies to neutralize the effects of the recent economic crisis, which allow the rebirth of child labour in areas where it was considered eradicated, will also be debated.
The Conference will create ways to integrate the lessons learnt from practical experiences in the fight against the worst forms of child labour shared in the Platform into the in-person Conference. Presentations will take place during the thematic panels and will create a contrast between specialist’s views and the enforcement of practical strategy in different contexts, enabling an environment of learning and exchange of experiences among participants.