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Decline in child labour cases

Luke Rawalai
Friday, May 30, 2014

THE Ministry of Labour registered 41 cases of child labour last year while it recorded two cases so far this year.

Speaking at the workshop on Child Labour in Labasa yesterday, the acting director Labour Standard Service, Atish Kumar said all cases reported in 2013 had been resolved as children involved had returned to school.

Mr Kumar said the two cases they received this year were not real cases of child labour.

"The matter was reported just because the two children were not going to school however we have sat with the parents and spoken to them," he said.

"Good news is that both children have now returned to school.

"Most of the cases we have received involve children working in supermarkets and selling roti parcels."

Mr Kumar said most of these children were involved in this work after school.

"In the past there were many cases which progressed unreported but the figures that we have now signifies that people are aware of the child labour laws."

Minister for Labour Jone Usamate said a child above 15 years and below 18 years could be employed after school in light work within the commercial sectors provided that the work did not affect the child's health and hours.

Mr Usamate said the list of Hazardous Occupations provided that no person below the age of 18 years be allowed to harvest sugar cane or use dangerous chemical in commercial farms.

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