Symposium: The Path to 2025: Lessons from Efforts to Combat Child Labour

28 September 2020
Policy Innovation

Nesrien Hamid  | Progamme Officer - Delta 8.7

Target 8.7 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals calls for the end of all forms of child labour by 2025. Last year, the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution declaring 2021 the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour. Global commitment to eradicate child labour has thus remained unflinching, and multilateral institutions, specially the International Labour Organization (ILO), have developed evidence-based guidelines and programmes for tackling child labour around the world. While much progress has been attained—with a 94 million reduction in the number of children engaged in child labour since 2000—the issue remains gargantuan. The most recent Global Estimates of Child Labour indicate that 152 million children around the world are in child labour, and if the same rate of progress is maintained, 121 million children will still be in child labour by 2025.

In this Symposium, Delta 8.7 brings together contributors from a variety of organizations who are engaged in implementation and evaluation of programmes to combat child labour in different contexts. The contributors reflect on lessons learned from their experiences, highlighting what their work has shown to be most effective, and outline persistent challenges, including those that emerged in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Symposium kicks-off with a piece by Dan Karlin from GoodWeave International, where he reflects on the organization’s work to eliminate child labour from textile supply chains. Subsequently, World Vision discuss their USDOL-funded Campos de Esperanza project in Mexico. Following that, the ILO’s Insaf Nizam highlights lessons learned and continuing challenges in Sri Lanka’s standout efforts to eradicate child labour. The Symposium closes off with a piece by UNICEF, where they draw insights from their recent report on COVID-19’s impacts on child labour and outline what measures need to be taken to mitigate its effects.

All of the contributions to the symposium can be found below:

Uncovering and Eradicating Child Labour in Hidden Supply Chains
Dan Karlin, GoodWeave International
29 September 2020

A Multidisciplinary Model Toward Preventing and Eradicating Child Labour in the Agricultural Sector
World Vision
30 September 2020

A Policy Journey towards the Elimination of Child Labour in Sri Lanka
Fowzul Insaf Nizam, International Labour Organization
1 October 2020

Protecting Children from Exploitation during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Claudia Cappa, Aniruddha Kulkarni, Amanda Bissex, Eshani Ruwanpura and Ramya Subrahmanian, UNICEF
2 October 2020

All these contributions culminated in a virtual panel held on 10 November where each author elaborated on lessons learned from their experiences implementing and evaluating programmes and projects to combat child labour in different contexts. In addition, they offered valuable insights into what their work has shown to be most effective, and outlined persistent challenges, including those that emerged in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The full recording of this event can be found below:

Delta 8.7 symposia offer experts the opportunity to discuss technical details of their research and receive commentary from the wider research and anti-slavery community. Researchers are then able to give a response to the previous commentaries received. We hope these symposia will spark further conversations and build the dialogue around research and data in the fight to eradicate forced labour, modern slavery, human trafficking and child labour.

Previous symposia can be found below:

Symposium: The Antislavery in Domestic Legislation Database

Symposium: Measurement, Action, Freedom to Achieve SDG Target 8.7

Symposium: Tomorrow’s Slavery, Today


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