Global supply chains

Children are affected in global supply chains in many different ways. While child labour is a recognised concern, supply chains often have a range of additional direct and indirect impacts on children's rights. For example, lack of decent working conditions for parents, limited maternity protections and the absence of childcare and breastfeeding support in the workplace all impact children.

Importantly, impacts on children are not limited to the workplace. Inadequate living conditions, poor maternal health and nutrition, lack of access to basic services and environmental pollution can have significant impacts on the health and development of children in global supply chains.

Addressing children's rights in what are often complex and fragmented sourcing networks can be a challenging task for business. Companies may not always have full visibility and control over business partners, especially in the deeper tiers of the supply chain. Moreover, root causes for adverse impacts are typically manifold, and cannot be addressed effectively by individual companies alone.

Together with key partners, UNICEF has therefore launched a set of innovative pilot projects to address these challenges. By helping companies understand impacts and take action, UNICEF is supporting the development and piloting of promising solutions that can lead towards better work and living conditions for workers and their families in global supply chains.