Thomson Reuters Foundation and Major International Media Reporting on CCR CSR's Study on Child Labor
The Thomson Reuters Foundation and other major international news outlets have picked up CCR CSR's latest study "Best Response: Auditors' Insights on Child Labor in Asia" to highlight that the majority of auditors in the manufacturing sector in Asia have encountered child labor in the past two years.
One of the report's major findings is the fact that often no remediation takes place to ensure the child’s best interest, and rarely is there a follow-up once the child has been removed from the workplace. The report found that in China, 82% of the discovered child laborers "disappear" before remediation begins and that, in most cases, the child prefers to continue working than participating in the remediation plan.
"Right now it is more like 'let's just make sure the child is not in the factory' and not 'what do we need to do to make sure the child is protected?'", CCR CSR executive director Ines Kaempfer told Thomson Reuters Foundation.
The report puts forward a number of suggestions on how brands and/or buyers can support the remediation process, with the most important one being having "guidelines/protocols for factories to follow immediately after the discovery of a child labor case."
The report also sheds light on how child laborers enter the factories and where in the factory they are most likely to work:
In China, the majority of underage child workers enter the workforce by using borrowed or forged IDs. This is further exacerbated by the fact that it is very difficult for the brand to secure cooperation with the factory.
Furthermore, the areas in which child labor was most likely to be found are in simple production process such as finishing and packaging. Due to the lack of age verification and the usage of fake or borrowed identification cards, the child was allowed inside the factory.
Ms. Kaempfer said auditors could play a stronger role in stopping child labor as they are often the first people to come across such practices:
"If there is a health and safety violation, the auditors will go back and check whether it has been fixed, but this is not happening with the children - that somebody will go back and see whether a best solution has been found for the child," she said.
Read the full article by Thomson Reuters Foundation here.
Click here to read the full report.