Child labour in Indonesia and Timor-Leste

Student holds red card against child labour in Timor-Leste.
See more photos on child labour in ILO Flickr photo library. 
Although there has been progress in reducing child labour in Indonesia and Timor-Leste, the problem persists. Research by the ILO’s International Programme for the Elimination of Child Labour (IPEC) has found working children in a number of economic sectors, including domestic labour, seafood processing, mining and quarrying, rag-picking and scavenging, rubber and sugar-cane plantations, entertainment and other services.

This list is not exclusive but it gives an indication of the efforts being made to document the many and varied forms of child labour.

The obvious vulnerability of working children also means that some face a further layer of exploitation - becoming victims of trafficking and sexual abuse.

If nothing is done about child labour the child labourers become young people with poor employment prospects who cannot lift their own families out of the poverty trap, cannot become parents able to give their children a better life, and cannot contribute effectively to national development.

Education therefore is the key. Through education and training economically and socially marginalized children and young people can lift themselves out of poverty and find ways to take a role in participate in their societies.