Millions of children are at risk of ending up in child labor because of the corona crisis. This would lead to the first increase in child labor in twenty years, UNICEF reports.
The United Nations Children’s Fund states that many children are forced to go to work, now that many family incomes are disappearing, and schools are closed due to the pandemic.
According to the report (“Covid-19 and child labor: A time of crisis, a time to act”) by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the UN Children’s Rights Fund UNICEF, since the year 2000, 94 million fewer children have been forced to work. The corona crisis is now jeopardizing that progress.
More children will be forced into child labor, and the children who had already been forced into child labor will now face worse working conditions, it sounds. This can lead to significant health and safety problems.
According to the report, a one percent increase in poverty could lead to an increase in child labor of at least 0.7 percent in certain countries. Also, due to loss of income, some parents can no longer send their children back to school, even if lessons start over, UNICEF says.
The children’s fund calls for more social protection, better access to credit for poor households, measures to get children back to school, and the abolition of school fees. More resources should also be available for labor inspections and law enforcement.