Challenges before policy makers with respect to child labour.

  • The pandemic is hampering enforcement of anti-child labour laws, with fewer workplace inspections and less vigorous pursuit of human traffickers.
  • NGOs point to the fact that the real spike in child labour is yet to come. When economic activity begins accelerating, there is a risk of returning migrants taking children along with them to the cities.
  • Children’s access to education, basic nutrition and other critical requirements for their development and wellbeing, have suffered a huge setback and many new children have fallen into the trap of forced labour along with further deteriorated conditions for the existing child labourers.
  • Incoherency between laws that prescribe a minimum age for employment and those for completion of compulsory school education. It also means that the expansion of quality universal basic education has to extend beyond the fulfilment of statutory provisions.
  • Multiple forms exist: Child labour is not uniform. It takes many forms depending upon the type of work that children are made to do, the age and sex of the child and whether they work independently or with families.
  • Due to this complex nature of child labour, there is no one strategy that can be used to eliminate it.
  • The absence of national legislation to give effect to global conventions on the employment of children in hazardous industries, as well as on the minimum age of work.
  • The lack of harmony between global commitments and domestic priorities.
  • Lack of effective labour inspections in the informal economy. Around 71% of working children are concentrated in the agriculture sector, with 69% of them undertaking unpaid work in family units.