Research report - National Child Labour Action Programme for South Africa (1).doc

There are also divergent views on the extent to which

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views on the issue. There are also divergent views on the extent to which child labour problems can be addressed directly, or indirectly through economic and social development. To establish what child work is harmful and would therefore constitute child labour requires a clearer understanding of when it has negative effects. Factors causing or increasing the risk of harm include a risk of physical harm; where educational opportunity is threatened; and a risk of exploitation. Key issues in assessing the potential harm to children are discussed below: (a) Table 1 provides an overview of work activities cause or increase potential harm to children. Table 1: Work-related activities – Factors that cause or increase real or potential harm Factor Factors that cause or increase risk of harm Number of hours per day / week Long hours Time of day / night Night work Wages Lower wages Piece work and task work Nature of work Dangerous circumstances, tools, chemicals and other dangerous exposures Commercial sexual exploitation, including expose to illnesses. High strain or exhausting. Heavy loads, especially when carried over long distances. Illegal work. Work that is ergonomically unsuited. Excessive responsibility No stimulation; repetitive Schooling Work detrimental to schooling Psychological effect Work that is degrading and that reduces the child’s sense of self-worth. Recreation and rest Work reducing significantly time for recreation and rest Inadequate meal and rest breaks Attitude of adults where child work Using coercion or intimidation Restricting child’s movement unreasonably. Where no caring adult present. Where work is performed: On the streets. Work that is hidden or isolated and not easily monitored (b) This policy addresses some forms of work-related activity considered detrimental for children's development, such as fetching fuel or water for many hours or over long distances and excessive chores at home. These activities potentially fall within the definition of child labour above,
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However, the policy does not refer to it as child labour. This is because such forms of work are often a result of family circumstances, or are related to cultural practices. There will probably not be political support for labelling these activities 'child labour'. Consequently it may be more appropriate to call such forms of work 'detrimental forms of child work'. (c) During the consultation process stakeholders also expressed the view that commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) should not be named as a form of child labour, as this term could be interpreted as sanitising what is, in fact, a crime. See 5.3 (d) Some forms of work-related activity are appropriate and beneficial (some argued even essential) for a child's development and socialisation. An example is participation by the child in appropriate domestic chores in their own homes for reasonable periods, all of which falls outside the scope of this policy .
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