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Philippines rolls out programs to intensify campaign against child labor

(Xinhua)

11:09, March 13, 2012

MANILA, March 12 (Xinhua) -- The Philippine government is exerting all-out efforts in waging a campaign against child labor, a senior government official said on Monday.

"As we did last year, we are sustaining our presence in the countryside in an effort to stamp out child labor in villages with high incidences of child labor. For 2012, we target 80 villages to become child-labor free," Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz said.

The labor chief said that she has tasked the DOLE's 16 regional offices to set the target to transform pre-identified villages where there are high incidence of child labor to be child labor- free villages.

This will be done by reactivating the Village Council for the Protection of Children, she said.

"In this program, we emphasize the important role of community leaders, notably the village captains, in identifying, eliminating, and preventing the incidence of child labor and the illegal recruitment of minors in their own communities," said Baldoz.

She said the DOLE has also begun work in improving the conditions of work of children, banning of child employment in hazardous occupation, and enforcement of law, standards, and policies under the mandate of her agency.

She noted that in 2011, the DOLE's vigilance resulted in the prevention and removal of 9,985 children from the worst forms of child labor.

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