Jamaica and Brazil strengthen their actions to achieve the first generation free of child labour

The content originally appeared on: Caribbean News Service

Brazil and Jamaica, two of the founding countries of the Regional Initiative Latin America and the Caribbean Free of Child Labour are holding an exchange of best practices in labour inspection, use of data and integration of social protection from 27 November 27 to 1 December, 2023 with the participation of government officials, representatives of employers’ organizations and workers’ organizations.

This exchange is part of the national commitments of both countries to eradicate child labour.  Pearnel Charles Jr. Minister of Labour and Social Security of Jamaica emphasized that Jamaica must put an end to child labour. “This is a moral choice we make as leaders and citizens to protect our most important asset, our human capital, our children and adolescents.”

It is worth noting that Jamaica, under the Programme for Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH), has been promoting a focus on its social protection actions based on the areas with the greatest vulnerability identified through the Child Labour Risk Identification Model (MIRTI).

“The action developed by Jamaica demonstrates that the use of data in decision making contributes to advancing the achievement of social justice, promoting targeted and efficient interventions for families at risk of child labour,” said Resel Melville, Official at the Regional Initiative and National Project Coordinator at the ILO Decent Work Team and Office for the Caribbean.

For several years, Brazil has been implementing a strong and strategic labour inspection programme aimed at improving the detection of improper labour practices and ensuring compliance with current regulations. These actions are in addition to strengthening its social protection policies and programmes, through improvements in the collection and analysis of data on the multi-dimensional well-being of families, children and adolescents.

These successful experiences in the prevention and eradication of child labour are noteworthy for their concrete achievements and their potential to be replicated in other contexts.

“I would like to highlight the benefits of the exchange for both countries, Brazil and Jamaica, derived from sharing Brazilian good practices implemented by the Secretariat of Labour Inspection of the Ministry of Labour and Employment of Brazil, as well as issues related to occupational safety and health and the promotion of decent work through the fight against child labour and forced labour,” said Elza Moreira Marcelino de Castro, Ambassador of Brazil to Jamaica.

During the three-day exchange, more than 40 officials, Jamaican authorities and representatives of employers’ and workers’ organizations are reflecting on labour inspection, the use of data and social protection for the prevention of child labour.

These workshops, coordinated through the Technical Secretariat of the Regional Initiative and the ILO Subregional Office for the Caribbean, are being delivered thanks to the support of the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC), a partner in the ILO-Brazil South-South Cooperation Programme.

The Regional Initiative Latin America and the Caribbean Free of Child Labour is a group of 31 countries working in an articulated and tripartite manner to achieve the first generation free of child labour in the region.

Currently, the Regional Initiative is made up of: Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay and Venezuela, together with the International Organization of Employers (IOE) and the Trade Union Confederation of the Americas (TUCA).

The Regional Initiative Latin America and the Caribbean Free of Child Labour operates with the technical assistance of the ILO and the sustained support of its partners, the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation (AECID), the Andalusian Agency for International Development Cooperation (AACID), the Brazilian Cooperation Agency (ABC) and the United States Department of Labor (USDOL).

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