Save Asia from child labour
Asia must act to prevent growth in child labour: expert 12 hours ago SINGAPORE (AFP) — Asia must act quickly to prevent millions of children dropping out of school to go to work as the global economic crisis worsens, a rights expert has warned. June Kane, an independent adviser to the United Nations and national governments on child rights, told AFP the crisis was a chance for authorities in the region to tackle child labour by giving parents incentives to keep minors in education. But she warned that authorities in Asia -- the biggest employer of the world's estimated 218 million child workers -- must act now to provide help to parents who might otherwise be forced to send their children out to work.... I happen to see the above posted in the TOC. It is a noble cause to push for, to help the children of poor countries and poor families from being made to earn a living at a tender age when they should be in school. But this is well said than done. Many are staring at poverty in their faces and helping out to earn a living is their way of getting an education in life. The country is poor and so are the parents. I was a child labour before. There were child labours in Singapore at one time. At one time many of our womenfolks were maids too. And getting a job as a labourer in the construction site was good jobs and good money. We have progressed over the years. We cannot mismanage and slip back to those days when everyone was poor. When aspirations of parents were for their children to become clerks. Even before I was in primary school, I was helping my mother in a godown, sorting coffee beans, picking out the debris and rotten seeds and repack them. The work was simple. Just sat on a large piece of mat, coffee seeds poured into the centre of the mat and the whole family sat around it, picking seed by seed, to earn a few cents a day. Quite comfortable actually. No sweat and not under the sun. No torture or abuses. Just working. And many parents were very happy when their wards failed the PSLE. They could start work earlier, working as kopi kia or walking the streets knocking on a piece of bamboo, kock kick kock, to peddle bak chor mee. It was a phase of our development and our social history.