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2021 International Year: Reigaining the Lost Momentum in the Fight Against Child Labour

13.30 – 15.00 (Bangkok time, GMT+7), 1 June 2021

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Organised by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)


Much progress has been made in the elimination of child labour and child labour has decreased by 38% in the last decade. But, nevertheless, 152 million children are still in child labour, almost half od them in hazardous work. Almost half of child labour happens in Africa (72 million children), followed by Asia and the Pacific (62 million). The COVID-19 pandemic poses a real danger that, for the ist time in almost 20 years, the world will witness an increase in the number of children in child labour and that years of progress could be reversed. 

Alliance 8.7, the global partnership on SDG Target 8.7, calls for accelerating action, strong collaboration at global, regional and national level, research an innovation in order to progress twards the achievement of target 8.7. The urgency to eliminate child labour in general, and in supply chains particularly, is highlighted by the fact that unlike many other SDG targets which have 2030 as their deadline, Target 8.7 calls for the prohibition and elimination of child labour by 2025. In view of this global priority the United Nations General Assembly has declared 2021 as the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour (IYECL).

Within the context of the International Year and in the lead up to the 5th Global Conference on Child Labour in 2022, it is time to accelerate the pace of progress. It is time to inspire legislative and practical actions to eliminate child labour for good and it is time to shift from commitments to action.

Session Description

This session will discuss policy and practical challenges faced by employers, workers, and governments in the elimination of child labour, including in the current crisis. Good practices in the elimination of child labour in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in particular Goal 8.7, 2021 Action Pledges and Lessons Learnt will be shared. By bringing in the voice of workers and employers in the Asia-Pacific region together with Government, the discussion will draw attention to some of the immediate challenges being faced in the elimination of child labour and will highlight the 2021 UN International Year on the Elimination of Child Labour.

Session Objectives

The key objectives of this session are to: 

  • Discuss the policy and practical challenges faced by businesses, workers, and government in the elimination and prevention of child labour;

  • Share the experiences, good practices and lessons learnt of a member of the Child Labour Platform (CLP);

  • Highlight the 2021 UN International Year on the Elimination of Child Labour; 

  • Share experiences of a Pathfinder Country of Alliance 8.7;

  • To explore challenges to eliminating child labour in different segments of  supply chains in the Asia-Pacific, both pre-existing and those emerging in the aftermath of the pandemic;

  • To share good practices and success stories from the region.




Panelists will reflect on the following questions:

  • What measures have you - workers, employers and governments-   taken or are taking with regard to the elimination and prevention of child labour?

  • What are some specific examples of challenges that you are facing?

  • How can the different stakeholders involved in the fight against child labour collaborate at national, regional and global level?

  • What role do global partnerships like Alliance 8.7 play in the elimination of child labour?

  • How can we ensure that the elimination of child labour remains a priority during the COVID-19 pandemic?

  • What are the new and emerging good practices that can be adopted and scaled up?

See also:

For questions, please contact unrbhrforum@undp.org