Safety and well-being of young workers stressed at ILO conference
A three-day training workshop on the ‘occupational safety and health of young workers’ (OSH) and ‘child labour monitoring system’ (CLMS) organized by International Labour Organization (ILO) has started on Monday at ILO Office in Islamabad.
The International Labour Organization in collaboration with Government of Pakistan has been working on a Project titled, “Combating Abusive Child Labour” with the financial support of the EU since 2008. With the technical assistance of this project, the Government of Pakistan established Provincial Child Labour Unit (PCLU) under the Provincial Labour Departments in Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan in 2010 in order to effectively combat the worst forms of child labour in the respective provinces.
“Hazardous child labour is on the rise in most parts of the world among children aged 15 to 17 was reported in the program. The International Labour organization (ILO) is drawing attention to the urgent issue of risk to children working in different sectors in Pakistan. The highest rate of injuries is being found in stone-crushing where children’s lungs are damaged by silica dust and they suffer bone injuries and the strenuous work of children in brick kiln.
Representatives of provincial government from Sindh, Punjab, KPK and Balochistan are meeting for four days this week to examine the results of these studies and to develop strategies for addressing this urgent problem which jeopardises the future of our youth.
On this occasion, speaking for ILO country Director for Pakistan, Ms. Margarate Read-Rounds said “We are convinced that hazardous work of children in specified sectors can be eradicated by the efforts of government, employers, workers and civil society. Pakistan has already taken note-worthy steps that need now to be expanded.”
Mr. Sujeewa Fonseka, chief technical advisor ILO - IPEC said that Pakistan will be gaining a new understanding of the extent and nature of hazardous child labour as it is planning to conduct a major statistical survey in 2012.
Dr. Susan Gun specialist on Hazardous child labour from ILO Geneva said that it is the responsibility of the government to safeguard children from hazardous forms of child labour.