Child labour

Child Labour in domestic work in Pakistan: A scoping study

Child labour in domestic work remains a widespread, but hidden, phenomenon worldwide. The qualitative study assessed the current situation of child labour in domestic work, elaborated the major push and pull factors, working conditions, effects on children's health, safety, and education, and recommended the priority areas for combatting child labour in domestic work in Pakistan.

This qualitative study was commissioned by the International Labour Organization (ILO) under the Asia Regional Child Labour (ARC) Project, with the financial support of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the United Kingdom. The project aims to reduce children's vulnerability to child labour and protect them from exploitation.

This study offered pertinent insights into the current landscape of child labour in domestic work in Pakistan and determined that one in every four households in Pakistan employs a child in domestic work, predominantly girls, aged 10 to 14 years. The lives of the children engaged in child labour in domestic work were assessed at the micro-level, where the 'push' factors were explored, including social support, home environment and, the attitude of children and parents towards child labour. The meso system explained the 'pull' factors for child labour in domestic work including the working conditions, exposure to hazards, violence and abuse, renumeration and payment methods, school attendance, the support of the family members and neighbourhood. The macro-level critically assessed the policies, laws and programmes, addressing the national and sub-national response to child labour in domestic work. And finally, the priority areas were recommended including legislative and non-legislative measures for combatting child labour in domestic work in Pakistan.