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Children should have the opportunity to grow and develop in a safe and healthy environment. Sign the child labor pledge!


Child labor is a serious issue that continues to plague many countries around the world. Despite laws and regulations designed to protect children from exploitation1, many companies continue to engage in the practice in order to cut costs and increase profits2. This not only violates the rights of children, but also perpetuates poverty and hinders the development of entire communities.

One of the major industries where child labor is prevalent is agriculture. In many developing countries, small-scale farmers and rural communities rely on the labor of children to plant, harvest, and transport crops3. Children as young as five are often forced to work long hours in dangerous conditions, exposed to pesticides and other hazards. They are also at risk of injury from heavy machinery and equipment4.

Another industry where child labor is common is the garment and textile industry. Many companies outsource production to countries where labor laws are lax and wages are low, creating an environment in which child labor can thrive5. Children are often forced to work in factories for long hours, with little or no pay, and in dangerous conditions6. They are also at risk of abuse and exploitation.

The mining industry is also another sector where child labor is widely practiced. Children as young as six years old are often forced to work in mines, digging for minerals and other resources. They are exposed to hazardous chemicals, dangerous machinery, and poor ventilation, putting them at risk of injury and long-term health problems7.

Some of the biggest ways companies exploit children are through:

Lower wages: Children are often paid less than adult workers, making them a cheaper source of labor for companies. This allows companies to cut costs and increase profits8.

Longer working hours: Children are often made to work longer hours than adults, allowing companies to increase productivity and output9.

Lack of regulations: In many countries, child labor laws are not enforced or are easily circumvented. Companies may operate in these areas to take advantage of this lack of oversight and regulation, allowing them to engage in child labor without fear of consequences10.

Outsourcing: Many companies outsource production to countries where labor laws are lax and wages are low, creating an environment in which child labor can thrive. This allows companies to take advantage of cheap labor while avoiding responsibility for the exploitation of children11.

Exploiting loopholes: Companies can take advantage of loopholes in labor laws, for example, by classifying children as "apprentices" or "trainees" rather than employees, to avoid paying them minimum wage or giving them the same rights as adult workers12.

Exploiting vulnerable communities: Companies can take advantage of poverty and lack of education in certain communities, targeting children and families that are most vulnerable to exploitative labor practices13.

These are just a few examples. However, it's not just in developing countries where this issue occurs, even in developed countries, some companies have been known to overlook laws to exploit cheap labor, putting children at risk14.

It's time for companies to take responsibility for their actions and ensure that their supply chains are free from child labor. This can be achieved through implementing strict policies and conducting regular audits to monitor compliance15. You can also play a role by choosing to buy products from companies that have a proven track record of ethical sourcing.

Make a difference in the lives of children around the world. Sign the Child Labor Pledge today!

More on this issue:

  1. Bureau of International Labor Affairs, "Child Labor, Forced Labor & Human Trafficking."
  2. Siôn Phillpott, Career Addict (27 February 2019), "10 Companies that Still Use Child Labour."
  3. University of California, Davis (20 October 2022), "Developing Countries and the Future of Small-scale Agriculture."
  4. Bethany Matta, Human Rights Watch (14 July 2016), "“They Bear All the Pain” Hazardous Child Labor in Afghanistan."
  5. Reliable Plant, Noria Corporation (2023), "How to avoid outsourcing problems related to child labor."
  6. Ashrita Rau, The Borgen Project, "Child Labor In Vietnam."
  7. Humanium, Olivier (6 April 2016) (6 April 2016), "Child labor in the mines of the Democratic Republic of Congo."
  8. Vivian Hendriksz, Fashion United (6 February 2017), "Child Labour & Low Wages: The Real Cost of Producing Fashion in Myanmar."
  9. UNICEF (9 June 2021), "Child labour."
  10. Carla Denly, University of California, Los Angeles (23 August 2019), "Child labor protections are lacking in many countries, study finds." 11 Laura Counts, Berkeley Haas (11 March 2020), "Do multinational corporations exploit foreign workers? Q&A with David Levine."
  11. The Lunt Group LLC, Employment Law Handbook (2023), "Apprenticeships and Student Learner Programs."
  12. United Nations (20 May 2021), "Reducing poverty and inequality in rural areas: key to inclusive development."
  13. Green America (2021), "US Companies Exploiting Workers."
  14. International Labour Organization, "Eliminating and Preventing Child Labour."
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The Pledge:

I understand that many companies continue to engage in the practice in order to cut costs and increase profits, despite laws and regulations designed to protect children from exploitation.

I believe that companies must take responsibility for their actions and ensure that their supply chains are free from child labor. Governments must also enforce laws and regulations that prohibit child labor, and provide support and resources for families and communities to prevent children from being forced into labor.

To further support these efforts, I pledge to:

1. Be mindful of the products I buy and the companies I support

I pledge to research the products I buy and the companies that produce them to ensure they are not made using child labor. I will look for certifications such as Fair Trade, which indicate that products were made ethically and sustainably.

2. Speak out against child labor

I pledge to speak to my friends, family, and community about the issue of child labor and encourage them to take action. I will contact my elected representatives and ask them to support legislation that aims to eliminate child labor.

3. Educate myself

I pledge to learn more about the issue of child labor and the industries and countries where it is most prevalent. This knowledge can help me make more informed decisions about the products you buy and the companies I support.

4. Support fair trade

I pledge to look for fair trade certified products, which ensure that farmers and workers are paid fair wages, and that no child labor is used in the production process.

5. Support organizations that work to eliminate child labor

There are many organizations around the world that work to combat child labor, provide education and support to children and families, and advocate for stronger labor laws. Organizations like Greater Good Charities are working to help ensure children have access to the food, education and other resources they need to thrive.

Child labor is a serious issue that affects millions of children, and it continues to be a major problem despite laws and regulations designed to protect them.

I pledge to take action and build a brighter future for children all around the world.

Pledged by,

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Signatures: