‘Every Child Safe’ campaign to focus on tackling child labour


Minister of Human Services and Social Security, Dr. Vindhya Persaud, on Friday, announced the ministry’s campaign to tackle child abuse will be amplified to curb unreported instances of child labour.

During an activity to raise awareness about child labour, Minister Persaud said the issue should be everybody’s business.

And now, the massive campaign dubbed ‘Every Child Safe’, which was launched in 2021 as part of efforts to curb the high number of reported child abuse cases, will also target child labour.

“We have started the ‘Every Child Safe’ programme which focuses on raising children and adults in a safe and secure environment [and] this morning I give the commitment through the…programme, that everything to do with child labour will be given equal importance as child abuse because the two intertwine so that awareness and education can happen at the community,” Dr Persaud said.

Minister of Human Services and Social Security Dr. Vindhya Persaud accompanied by several school children after the Ministry of Labour’s Child Labour Awareness Walk (Photo: Minister of Human Services and Social Security/ June 9, 2023)

One of the main pillars of the ‘Every Child Safe’ campaign is public awareness to ensure the general populace is aware of the warning signs to identify whether a child is being abused. World Day Against Child Labour is observed annually on June 12. This year it is observed under the theme, “Social Justice for all. End Child Labour.”

The Ministry of Labour, the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security and the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport are collaborating to provide a government response to the issue. Labour offices were established in most regions for persons to make reports but up to last year, Labour Minister Joseph Hamilton said even with multiple ways to increase the availability of officers, no reports have been received since 2021.

It is unclear whether this means the reports aren’t being made or child labour situations are decreasing.

Hence, Minister Persaud encouraged persons to educate themselves on the issue and work collectively with the ministries and supporting agencies to put a stop to child abuse and child labour. She noted that reporting these issues must not be left to only the officers at state agencies but across the board.

“Go out there, see it, know it, recognise it and report it. Reporting must not be left only to officers of state agencies. Reporting must be something that is done around the country by every single citizen be it a child or an adult,” she said.

She noted that the government has several programmes available to keep children occupied and ensure that they are not vulnerable to exploitation and emphasised that there are study opportunities and training programmes through the Ministry of Labour’s Board of Industrial Training (BIT) and the Ministry of Public Service.

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