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“I was denied an education because I had to start working at a young age” – SABC News

A child labor survivor from India, Rajesh Jadav, says he was denied an education because he had to start working at a young age.

Jatav worked in a brick factory with his whole family. According to research by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and UNICEF, 106 million children in child labor are not receiving an education.

The Global Conference on the Elimination of Child Labour also examines how to remove barriers to school attendance for children. The conference is currently taking place at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Center in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.

Jatav says he really wants to go to school like other children.

“I used to work in a brick factory with my whole family. I used to make bricks. So sometimes I saw some kids going to school, I saw them going to school with their bags. My family’s financial situation was not good, so they could not send me to school. But I always thought I should go to school.”

The impact of COVID-19 could force millions into child labour

A report by the ILO and UNICEF states that millions of people are at risk of becoming victims of child labor due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russel says children who dropped out of school during the pandemic need to be reintegrated into the learning system.

“For some families facing economic crises and instability, child labor is a coping mechanism. These families need direct support to weather storms without letting their children work. We must also ensure that all children learn in school where they belong and reintegrate children and young people who have had to drop out of school. We must never accept child labor as inevitable. We have the power to change it.”

Increased social protection

Conference delegates say ending child labor will require increased social protection and supply chain oversight through a multi-stakeholder approach.

The conference seeks to examine why millions of children are victims of exploitative labor practices.

SABC News reporter Bongani Gema speaks to Michaëlle de Cock from the ILO:

“I was denied an education because I had to start working at a young age” – SABC News

Source link “I was denied an education because I had to start working at a young age” – SABC News

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