Hacer Boyacıoğlu - ANKARA
Turkey’s Labor and Social Security Ministry has dubbed 2018 as the year “to fight child labor” and prepared an action plan that includes several key measures, from tighter controls in child labor intensive sectors to closer examination to schools’ student attendance records, in a bid to achieve this goal.
In 2012, there were 890,000 workers aged between six and 17; however, there is no data on the consecutive years. Some 292,000 of them were aged between six and 14, according to data from the Turkish Statistics Institute (TÜİK).
While 44.7 percent of all child laborers worked in the agricultural sector, around 24 percent were employed in industrial sectors.
The ministry’s action plan, which is slated to be online until 2023, envisages a strict ban on the employment of child workers in the agricultural sector, with the exception of non-fee works by children for their families.
Security forces will strictly monitor agriculture fields to ensure there are no children working. Employers who hire child workers will be inspected by authorities.
Authorized teams, under the auspices of the Education Ministry, will check student attendance records regularly to see whether children are in school or not.
According to the action plan, the main reason why children are forced to work is due to the high levels of poverty and strong demand for unregistered workplaces.