GENEVA, Nov.14,2017-- The International Labor Organization (ILO) on Monday called in a report for stepped-up efforts to end child labor globally.
The report was released to coincide with the IV Global Conference on the Sustained Eradication of Child Labor to be held in Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina, from Tuesday to Thursday, said the Geneva-based UN agency.
"We are moving in the right direction, but we have to do so at a much faster rate," the ILO said in its report titled "Ending child labor by 2025: A review of policies and programs".
Global estimates published in September 2017 indicate that 152 million children aged 5-17, or almost one in 10, are in child labor globally.
Child labor has declined since in 2000, but the pace slowed down between 2012 and 2016. On current trends, 121 million children would still be engaged in child labor in 2025, said the report.
The report lists four key policy "pillars" in the fight against child labor: Boosting legal protections, improving the governance of labor markets and family enterprises, strengthening social protection and investing in free, quality education.
It points out that legislation alone cannot eradicate child labor, but without effective legislation, it won't be possible to eradicate child labor.
More than 99.9 percent of the world's children aged 5-17 years are covered by the ILO's Worst Forms of Child Labor Convention, 1999 (No. 182), which 181 countries have ratified.
Also widely ratified is the Convention concerning Minimum Age for Admission to Employment, 1973 (No. 138), which 170 countries have ratified.
However, turning such standards into national laws is still a major challenge. And it's also difficult with regards to effective monitoring and enforcement of existing child labor laws, says the ILO.
There is also a need for stronger labor inspection systems as it rarely reaches workplaces in the informal economy, where most child labor is found.