According to a September 2013 report by the ILO (International Labor Organization), Child Labor is down one-third from 2000. Although that is a step in the right direction, there are still 168 million child laborers out there as defined by the ILO.
Child Labor down
There are a few ways to go about making this drop even greater for the future.
According to the linked report above, child laborers are mostly found in Agriculture (59% or 98 million). So for those in North America, U.K., and Australia (leading farming areas around the world) we can continue to buy from local farmers within our communities. I was slightly surprised to see that the local grocery store did supply concentrate apple juice that was MADE IN CHINA (Im not yelling...usually the tag or label is in all caps).
The Child Labor Coalition has some great articles in regards to Child Labor in our everyday products.
I have to wonder however, after reading the Minimum Age Convention, especially Article 6 and 7. Is it truly down or is it a numbers game to make it look like it dropped?
Is adult slave labor on the rise? Hence the drop in child labor, or part of it.
Or is Child trafficking up and less kids to work in warehouses or the fields?
Oddly, ILO reports that Child labor is low risk in the UK but Child trafficking is on the rise.
So are we slowly ending Child Labor or are we moving the numbers around to make it look like we are?
I think its a bit of both but overall we are stopping it one child at a time.
So when in doubt, if you can't buy locally buy from lower risk areas of the world:
Any others please let me know.