New Research and App to Combat Child Labor and Modern Slavery

Friday, October 6, 2017

The U.S. Department of Labor has released an update of its annual child labor report – representing the most comprehensive research product to date on the state of child labor in over 130 countries worldwide. The Department simultaneously released a new mobile app, Comply Chain, designed to help businesses root out child labor and forced labor from global supply chains.

The announcement follows International Labor Organization (ILO) figures released yesterday estimating there are still over 152 million child laborers and 25 million forced laborers worldwide. While the child labor estimates represent a nearly 40 percent reduction, or 94 million fewer children, since the ILO began measuring the global prevalence of child labor over 15 years ago, the pace of change has markedly declined over the past four years compared with previous periods.

The sixteenth annual edition of the Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor recognizes the efforts of 135 countries and territories around the world to address child labor and assesses whether each country has made significant, moderate, minimal, or no advancement over the past year. In 2016, 23 countries made a significant advancement in their efforts to address child labor, more than ever before. The report also details substantial actions that countries will need to take to continue to make progress towards eliminating child labor.

To help businesses do their part in ending child labor and forced labor, the Department’s new mobile application, Comply Chain: Business Tools for Labor Compliance in Global Supply Chains, provides companies clear and detailed guidance on how to develop robust social compliance systems in their global supply chains. The easy-to-use tool assists companies, including suppliers, in identifying, rectifying, and preventing labor abuses in the goods they produce. The free resource is available for download on both iOS and Android platforms.

Also accompanying the release of the report is an updated version of the Sweat & Toil smart phone app, which contains information on goods produced by child labor or forced labor and the latest findings on government’s efforts to address child labor. It makes thousands of pages of data portable, searchable, and accessible in every corner of the globe.

More information is available at Printed versions of the reports are available from the Office of Child Labor, Forced Labor and Human Trafficking, Bureau of International Labor Affairs, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Ave. NW, Room S-5315, Washington, DC 20210. Inquiries can also be made via telephone at 202-693-4843, fax at 202-693-4830 or email at [email protected].

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