Survey Reveals Reality of Child Labor on International Children's Day
Sulaimani, KRI (June 1, 2023) - On International Children's Day, a significant event took place in Sulaimani, attended by the Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, Ms. Kwestan Mohammad. The event marked the announcement of the results of the labor and street children survey in Sulaimani and Halabja governorates. The survey have been prepared by Rwanga Foundation and Directorate of Social Care in Sulaimani, reveals alarming data about the percentage of street children working in these areas, emphasizing the need for immediate and effective action.
The survey was conducted in three stages by the staff of the Children's Emergency Line in Sulaimani (116) managed by the Directorate of Social Care in Sulaimani. The comprehensive survey encompassed various aspects related to labor and street children, providing valuable insights into their living conditions and the challenges they face.
According to the survey results, a total of 1,466 children were targeted. Among these children, 1,053 belonged to the host community, while 362 were IDPs, and 69 were refugees. The age distribution of the children revealed the following: one child fell within the 1-4 years age group, 128 children were between 5 and 8 years old, 529 children were aged between 10 and 14 years, and the largest group consisted of 808 children aged between 15 and 18 years.
The finding declares that, 91.4% of working children still have their parents alive. Furthermore, the survey highlighted that 40.2% of children experienced violence while working, underscoring the urgent need for protection and intervention.
Within the working children, the highest percentage belonged to the Kurdish ethnicity, accounting for 68.9% of the working children. Additionally, 29.4% of the working children were of Arab ethnicity and had been displaced from cities in central and southern Iraq. A small proportion, 1.7%, consisted of working children from other ethnic backgrounds, excluding Kurds and Arabs.
These findings from the survey serve as a wake-up call to address the pressing issues faced by labor and street children in Sulaimani and Halabja governorates. Urgent action is needed to ensure their protection, access to education, and opportunities for a better future.