HLPF 2021: Fighting forced and child labour requires holistic approach to workers’ rights

Speaking on behalf of the global trade union movement, Measho Berihu (CETU, Ethiopia) participated in the side-event of the Alliance 8.7. that was held in the frame of the HLPF 2021 on 14 July. The session was dedicated to assessing global progress on the eradication of child labour.

Measho Berishu started his intervention by reminding the audience that there is not much to celebrate as the world “continues to allow forced and child labour to persist and even rise in recent years”.

He underlined that to efficiently combat forced and child labour, the issue cannot be dealt with in isolation from other worker’s rights. “As workers representative, I believe that when workers are formally employed with decent wages and adequate social protection, and labour rights are reinforced by effective labour inspection, forced and child labour stand no chance,” he said.

Among others measures, Measho Berishu urged all governments facing forced and child labour in their country to strengthen the capacity and reach of labour inspectors, and to hold frequent tripartite consultation on this matter.

In Ethiopia, the situation is far from bright as 42.7% of children aged between 5 and 17 engaged in child labour, and 87.5% out of them are working in hazardous work. Engaging in efficient solutions to address this situation is a priority for trade unions. In this respect, CETU is running three programmes across the country, thanks to the financial support of LO Norway and the NORAD programme.

 Watch Measho Berishu’s intervention twitter (short version) | facebook (full version)| UNWebTV
 Watch the full session (UNWebTV)