MALACAÑANG yesterday said it has been addressing the issue of child labor following a National Statistics Office report that about three million children in the Philippines are exposed to dangerous work environments.
Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda bared the Aquino government’s programs addressing child labor issues and ensuring the safety, well-being and literacy of the younger generation of Filipinos.
Lacierda said the programs are being implemented by a multi-agency cluster composed of the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the Department of Labor and Employment, among other agencies.
“Meron pong ginagawang kampanya ang DSWD and DOLE… both agencies will be engaged in the Human Development and Poverty Reduction Cluster in addressing the issue of child labor,” Lacierda said.
He noted the respective roles of each agency in carrying out the program that features the national campaign to declare 80 barangays as child labor-free by the end of this year.
“On the part of the DOLE there is a national campaign to declare 80 barangays of five poor regions as child labor-free by the end of 2012," Lacierda said, adding that part of the campaign is to reduce by 75 per cent all worst forms of child labor.
Lacierda was reacting to a survey by the NSO that some three million children in the Philippines, aged 5 to 17, are exposed to dangerous work environments.
The results of the October 2011 Survey on Children were released Tuesday at the launching of "Batang Malaya," a nationwide campaign to fight child labor.
DOLE said the preliminary results of the survey showed that there are 5.492 million working children 5-17 years old as of October 2011.
Of this number, "2.993 million (54.5 percent) are reported to be exposed to hazardous child labor," DOLE said.