ILAB Report gives consumers reason to shop responsibly
A United States Department of Labor Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB) report gives consumers reason to shop responsibly.
Released in September 2009, the report shows 122 goods in 58 countries that are produced with a significant incidence of child labor, forced child labor, or both. However, the research shows more goods made with child labor than with forced labor. Yet, the ILAB is "...reluctant to draw conclusions from this, as it could be the result of a greater availability of data on child labor, or the possibility that forced labor is better concealed by perpetrators." The report also shows that some of the worst offenders of forced labor are Boliva, Burma, China, India, Nepal, North Korea, and Pakistan.
The Department of Labor's List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor was submitted to US Vice-President Joseph Biden and Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi by US Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis. In the report's foreward, the Secretary of Labor states:
Most Americans and most consumers in the world market would not choose to purchase goods known to be produced or by exploited children or forced laborers - at any price. Likewise, most American companies would prefer that their global suppliers respect workers' and children's fundamental rights and provide their employers with working conditions that meet acceptable local standards. However, to translate these values and preferences into day-to-day purchasing decisions, firms and consumers need reliable information about the labor conditions under which goods are produced.
In 2005, Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, directing the Secretary of Labor and the Department of Labor's Bureau of International Affairs (ILAB) to compile "a list of goods that ILAB has reason to believe were produced using forced labor or child labor" in order to provide consumers and firms with this type of information.
This report presents that list of goods. The research on which the list is based builds on fifteen years of investigation, anaylsis and reporting on these and related issues by ILAB. Since 1993, ILAB has published over 20 reports on exploitive labor practices worldwide, including our annual Department of Labor's Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor.
ILAB's Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking has also provided more than $720 million in funding for projects to combat these practices in over 80 countries. By raising awareness of harmful labor practices and funding projects to prevent children and adults from engaging in the worst forms of labor exploitation, the Department has provided important tools that governments and other stakeholders can use to end these unacceptable practices.
The International Labor Organization estimates that over 12 million persons worldwide are working in some form of forced labor or bondage and that more than 200 million children are at work, many in hazardous forms of labor.
Read List of Goods Produced by Child or Forced Labor - Sorted by Country.
Read the entire report required by the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Acts of 2005 and 2008 titled, The Department of Labor's List of Goods Produced by Child Labor or Forced Labor.
Read previous United States Department of Labor Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor, and Human Trafficking (OCFT) Publications.
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