11 October: International day of the girl child – economics
“Gender inequalities that take root at an early age tend to produce long-term gender inequality which is reproduced in the world of work…
Yet, notwithstanding the values, principles and rights so widely endorsed by the international community, too often the reality is that girls are systematically left behind by virtue of their sex. This must end.
Practices such as child labour and child marriage … are a denial of the rights of children and an acute constraint to their full development. Such practices also weigh heavily on the overall capacity of societies to achieve their development objectives.
Some 88 million of the world’s child labourers are girls…
Many girls enter the workforce at an early age, commonly ending up in the lowest paid and insecure work, constrained by gender inequality at home and in the workplace. Moreover many working in the home remain invisible and unaccounted for. The patterns of inequality are also reflected in education outcomes with 64 per cent of illiterate adults being women.
Detailed information on child labour, including a lot of good news, can be found here. Among other things:
Our estimation of child labour trends for the period 2004 to 2008 shows the following:
● Globally, child labour continues to decline, albeit to a lesser extent than before. There are still 215 million children caught in child labour.
● The number of children in hazardous work, often used as a proxy for measuring the extent of the worst forms of child labour, is declining, particularly among those below 15 years of age. The overall rate of reduction, however, has slowed. There are still 115 million children in hazardous work.
● Children’s work is declining in the Asia-Pacific region and in Latin America and the Caribbean, but it is increasing in sub-Saharan Africa.
● Among girls there is a significant decrease. Among boys and older children (age 15 to 17),
however, the trends show some increase.
● Most child labourers continue to work in agriculture. Only one in five working children is in paid employment. The overwhelming majority are unpaid family workers.