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National Campaign against Child Labour in Bangladesh

Saturday 12 June 2010 will mark the ninth annual World Day against Child Labour. The day serves to highlight the plight of children forced into any work that interferes with their education, or that is harmful to their physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development.

This year, UNICEF Bangladesh together with the Government of Bangladesh and International Labour Organisation (ILO) have chosen the World Day against Child Labour to launch a national communication campaign against child labour. The aim of the campaign is to promote the message that child labour is unacceptable among children aged under 14, and to ensure that parents and employers guarantee the rights of working children aged 14 and above.

According to a 2006 survey  conducted by UNICEF and the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics, 13 per cent of children aged between 5 and 14 are engaged in child labour, with more than twice as many boys affected as girls.

Child labour deprives children of their right to an education, and about half of all children involved in child labour in Bangladesh do not attend school. The national campaign will place great emphasis on this issue with a slogan that reads: ‘School is the best place for a child to work’. The campaign also aims to combat attitudes of social acceptance around child labour, as many adults still consider it ‘normal’ for a child to work to support their family

For the duration of the campaign, a wide variety of communication methods including television, radio, print media and community theatre will be used to promote key messages. In addition, a unique theme song recorded especially for the campaign will be broadcast on BTV from 12 June.

The campaign will also feature a number a special one-off events designed to increase public awareness. A national-level music competition for working children that focuses on the themes of child labour and education will culminate in the recording of an album of the best songs, and a televised debate will give children a platform to have their say on child labour issues.



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