World Day Against Child Labour is observed on June 12. The day is marked each year to highlight the barbaric practice of child labour.
The theme this year is, “COVID-19 - Protect children from child labour now, more than ever".
According to figures available on the United Nations' website, approximately 152 million children have been pushed into child labour. Out of the 152 million, around 72 million are involved in hazardous work.
Further, the data also reveals that around 48 per cent victims of child labour are aged between 5-11 years, 28 per cent are aged between 12 to 14 years and the remaining 24 per cent fall in the 15 to 17 years bracket.
Majority of the child labourers, around 71%, are involved in the agricultural sector that includes fishing, forestry, livestock herding and aquaculture.
The situation is more likely to get exacerbated especially during these times. It is known that the novel coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on the livelihoods of scores of people. The economies of most countries have been badly affected. In such a scenario, the chances of the working conditions of child labourers deteriorating are high.
But in a ray of hope, there is a decline in the number of child labourers. As per the United Nations, child labour has been reduced by two-thirds in recent years and there has been a decline of 94 million in terms of the number of children involved since 2000.
The organisation aims to put an end to this practice by 2025.
This year, World Day Against Child Labour will be held as a virtual campaign due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign is being jointly organised by Global March Against Child Labour and the International Partnership for Cooperation on Child Labour in Agriculture (IPCCLA).