AMERICA/BOLIVIA - Rights of children without protection: they work instead of playing, studying and resting

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

La Paz (Agenzia Fides) - Poverty, migration, broken families are among the causes which force many children and teenagers to work. In Bolivia, there are 850 thousand boys, girls and teenage workers, accounting for 28% of the population between 5 and 17 years. Over 87% are involved in very dangerous job, causing problems to their health, 397 000 work in the city, 452 000 in the fields. Out of the total, about 491 000 are between 5 and 13 years of age, although the minimum age in Bolivia scheduled to work is 14. Of these, 437 thousand are exploited in dangerous jobs: 134 000 in urban areas and 303 000 in rural areas. Adolescents between 14 and 17 who work are 357 000, of which 309 000 involved in risky activities: 172 000 in the city and 137 000 in the rural area. In addition, 77.11% of children between 5 and 17 years of age work with their family members and are not paid. In the urban area 19.17% work on their own. 2.23% are workers or employees, 12.41% have an employer and 5.12% work for other families. There are 22,270 children who do not attend school and instead earn a living as servants; 258,940 have only one parent, and therefore must contribute to the economic family income; 200 000 instead of playing and resting are used for heavy work. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 13/6/2012)