Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday underscored the importance of quality education in eliminating the menace of child labor, particularly its worst forms, saying keeping children in school is a key step in keeping children away from work.
“Children and their parents should be made to understand that education—quality education—is a sure-fire formula in eliminating the scourge,” she said, as she expressed solidarity with anti-child labor advocates, international organizations, media, and civil society in the observance of the World Day Against Child Labor, an annual world-wide event that highlights accomplishments, challenges, strategies, and future direction of the fight against child labor.
The observance of the World Day Against Child Labor this year focused on the importance of quality education as a key step in tackling child labor. In Manila, the observance was held at the Occupational Safety and Health Center on 28 August with the presence of officials of the DOLE, International Labor Organization, unions, employers, and social partners.
The theme of this year’s World Day Against Child Labor was Edukasyon at Pagsasanay, Tungosa Marangal na Buhay.
The World Day Against Child Labor is an important opportunity for people around the world to call attention to the plight of child workers. It is also an occasion for us to bat for more access to quality education, particularly to victims of child labor. With access and equal opportunity to education, we can ensure that child labourers can realize their potential and break the cycle of poverty that pushed them into child labor in the first place,” Baldoz said.
The DOLE’s Bureau of Workers with Special Concerns (BWSC), together with its social partners, spearheaded the commemoration of the World Day Against Child Labor, all of which were aimed at raising awareness on the national policies on child labor and quality education.
The highlight of the celebration is the“Batang Malaya Kapihan”, a media forum on the policies of the government on child labor and education. The panellists at the forum were Department of Education Secretary Armin Luistro and ILO Country Director Lawrence Jeff Johnson. There was also a Batang Malaya Quiz Bee and Sabayang Pagbigkas para sa Batang Malaya, a contest participated by students of from public and private elementary and high schools.