Bangladesh urged to end the worst forms of child labor

15:21, June 13, 2010      

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Eliminating the worst forms of child labor is the most urgent and important task Bangladesh should undertake in line with the new National Child Labor Elimination Policy, said speakers here in a seminar Saturday.

The worst forms of child labor are defined by the International Labor Organization (ILO) Convention No. 182 and refer to work which is likely to harm the health, safety or morals of children, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said in press release.

There are 1.3 million children in Bangladesh who are engaged in hazardous jobs or work 43 hours or more per week.

At a National Seminar held Saturday as the country celebrates the World Day Against Child Labour, Bangladeshi Labor and Employment Minister Khandker Mosharraf Hossain said the Bangladeshi government has put enormous efforts in order to mainstream child labor issue into the national development plans and programs.

Gagan Rajbhandari, country director of ILO, said the Bangladeshi government, after consultation with the organizations of employers and workers concerned, should urgently formalize the list of hazardous occupations prohibited to children under the 18 years of age.

"This will give the list legal force as well as send a clear signal to employers that such occupations should never be given to children," he said.

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