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Statement by President Mattarella on the occasion of the World Day Against Child Labour

The President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, has issued the following statement:

“The World Day Against Child Labour falls on the occasion of the United Nations year to eliminate child labour. According to the International Labour Organisationestimates, more than 150 million children are still involved in this intolerable system, and I would like to stress the need for a concrete and united commitment from the States to tackle it.
The ambitious goal is to stop all forms of child labour (including the appallingrecruitment and use of child soldiers) by 2025. Over 70 million girls and boys worldwide are estimated to be forced into hazardous work activities that put their health, safety and integrity at risk.
More than 100 million children have been freed from child labour in the last 20 years. But this risk has increased during the pandemic, especially in the most fragile countries, where there has been a link between increased poverty, school closures and the push for children to enter the informal labour market.
The phenomenon of child labour, including exploitation by organised crime, is,unfortunately, affecting Italy too, a situation that jeopardises the future of our young people and society as a whole.
A joint effort by the whole society and its institutions is needed to end this severeviolation of children’s rights and make children’s right to a future freely chosen by them a reality. In this sense, the awareness-raising initiatives planned in Italy over the next few days are particularly worthy.”