|Doseba Tua Sinay, National Director of World Vision Viet Nam, delivers a speech at the launch of the project against child exploitation on Thursday. — VNS Photo Khánh Linh
HÀ NỘI — Government agencies, local child protection committees, the private sector and the communities need to step up efforts to provide timely support and interventions for children at risk of becoming engaged in child labour in Việt Nam, uphold children’s rights and achieve zero child labour, a conference heard on Thursday.
Speaking at the launch ceremony of the project against child exploitation on Thursday, Doseba Tua Sinay, National Director of World Vision Việt Nam, said that in the past few years, Việt Nam had made significant strides in the fight against child labour.
The country has developed a solid legal framework aligned with international labour standards and carried out projects to counter child labour.
However, child labour persists in the country, especially in the economy’s informal sector.
The survey on Child Labour conducted by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs in 2018 showed that more than 1,031,940 children aged 5 to 17 are engaged in child labour. Of that, 34.2 per cent work 40 hours per week or more and 50.4 per cent are involved in hazardous work.
Notably, the online sexual exploitation of children, the worst form of child labour, has become a new challenge in Việt Nam, he said.
Figures from the National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children showed that more than 706,000 online child sexual abuse materials were reported in Việt Nam in 2018, ranking second in Southeast Asia.
“The intensified risk of child labour requires the Government and related stakeholders to make collective efforts as individual sacrifice alone will not bring us to the zero child labour goal,” he said.
|Children play in front of their house in northern mountainous Điện Biên Province. — VNA/VNS Photo
Rafiq Mangi, deputy director of Against Child Exploitation Project, said the project had been implemented from November 2021 to September 2024 in Tuần Giáo, Mường Ảng districts in northern Điện Biên Province, Sơn Trà, Hải Châu and Liên Chiểu districts in central Đà Nẵng City, and Tam Kỳ City in central Quảng Nam Province.
The project, with total capital of more than US$2.47 million, focuses on improving enforcement of the legal framework and policies about online sexual exploitation of children and violations of acceptable conditions of work, improving assistance services for victims of child labour, and strengthening partnerships to accelerate progress on the issue.
Under the project, Government agencies, local child protection committees, assistance service providers, the private sector and the communities will enhance public awareness of child labour, especially online sexual exploitation of children, and build capacity for social workers and service providers at child protection committees.
They will provide on-demand assistance services for affected children, promote home visits, case management and referral services, and pilot counselling and support points at the district level.
They will also focus on partnership promotion to detect, remove, and respond to online sexual exploitation of children and share practices in addressing the issue.
He said the child protection system would be strengthened through community child labour monitoring tools.
Rafiq Mangi said in the 5th Global Conference on the Elimination of Child Labour held this May in Durban, South Africa, delegates agreed on the Durban Call to Action, which outlines firm commitments to end child labour.
"The project is adding a voice to the global call to end child labour, reaffirming Việt Nam’s commitment towards zero child labour, bringing life-changing impact to the most vulnerable children and towards life in all its fullness,” he said.
Nguyễn Thị Kim Hoa, head of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs’ Child Protection Office, said Việt Nam would continue completing laws and policies on child labour prevention, implement the 2019 Labour Code on juvenile workers, and develop intervention procedure for child labour.
Poverty reduction and social security will be implemented with child labour issues, she said, adding that education on child labour needed to be promoted among parents, guardians and caregivers.
Management authorities at all levels will improve their capacity to find and intervene in child labour. She said that a network of finding child labour early and supporting high-risk children must be set up.
“High-risk children and their families should be able to access supportive policies and programmes to improve their incomes and have a chance to go to school or vocational training,” she said. — VNS