28 January 2021

Thirteen-year-old Min Min scavenges day and night for precious stones in a quarry in Hpakant, northern Myanmar, where perilous conditions have led to the deaths of many workers. With more than a million children working in the country, the UN is fighting to end child labour worldwide.

 

The child workers run considerable risks: in just one day, in July 2020, some 200 people died in a mudslide at a jade mining site in Hpakant.

The International Labour Organization (ILO) in Myanmar has successfully helped to halve child labour in three communities, as part of a pilot project and, with 2021 marking the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, is working closely with the Government to eliminate the practice in the country.

Read more here about Min Min’s struggle to survive, and how the UN is fighting to protect child workers.

 

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News Tracker: Past Stories on This Issue

Child labour ‘robs children of their future’, scourge must end urges UN

Although child labour has decreased significantly over the last decade, one-in-ten children are still caught up in harmful work, the UN’s labour agency said on Friday, kicking off a year-long bid to eradicate the practice.  

FROM THE FIELD: Warlords and warehouses; reflections of retired Myanmar WFP staffer

Negotiating with warlords in Somalia and rebels in the South Sudanese bush, and salvaging food from the chaos of the port of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, was once routine for a retired staff member of the World Food Programme (WFP) from Myanmar.