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Philippines

2013 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Significant Advancement

In 2013, the Philippines made a significant advancement in efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) updated the country's hazardous list for children and conducted additional research on child labor in agriculture, the largest child labor sector, to inform policy and programs. The Government also implemented the Convergence Program Against Child Labor (2013-2016) to assist local governments in creating child-labor free communities. The President of the Philippines issued an executive order to prevent grave child rights violations by creating improved monitoring systems for children in armed conflict. The Government also passed the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act to establish a permanent Interagency Council, create a database on trafficking cases, expand provisions to protect victims of trafficking, and establish stronger penalties for violations, including those against children. However, children in the Philippines continue to engage in child labor in agriculture and domestic service.

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I. Prevalence and Sectoral Distribution of Child Labor

Children in the Philippines are engaged in child labor, primarily in agriculture and domestic service.(1-5) The 2011 National Survey on Children indicated that 3.21 million children are engaged in child labor, of which 2.99 million work in hazardous labor.(6) Most child labor occurs in the informal sector, with about 60 percent in agriculture.(7) Table 1 provides key indicators on children's work and education in the Philippines.

Table 1. Statistics on Children's Work and Education
Working children, ages 5 to 14 (% and population): 11.0 (2,180,565)
Working children by sector, ages 5 to 14 (%)  
Agriculture 65.4
Industry 5.3
Services 29.4
School attendance, ages 5 to 14 (%): 87.6
Children combining work and school, ages 7 to 14 (%): 11.3
Primary completion rate (%): 91.3

Source for primary completion rate: Data from 2009, published by UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2014. (8)
Source for all other data: Understanding Children's Work Project's analysis of statistics from Labour Force Survey-Child Labour Survey, 2001. (9)

Based on a review of available information, Table 2 provides an overview of children's work by sector and activity.

Table 2. Overview of Children's Work by Sector and Activity
Sector/Industry Activity
Agriculture Production of sugarcane, bananas, coconuts, corn, hogs, rice, rubber, and tobacco (1, 10-12)
Production of other fruits* and vegetables,* activities unknown (1, 10)
Industry Mining†and quarrying,†including gold extraction (1, 2, 4, 11-13)
Deep-sea fishing† (1, 4, 13, 14)
Manufacturing pyrotechnics† (1, 13, 15, 16)
Construction, activities unknown* (1, 4)
Production of fashion accessories (1, 4)
Services Domestic work (1, 11-13, 17-20)
Street work, including scavenging and begging* (1, 4, 7)
Scavenging in dumpsites (1, 11-13, 15)
Categorical Worst Forms of Child Labor‡ Commercial sexual exploitation sometimes as a result of human trafficking (2, 7, 12, 15, 20-22)
Forced labor, including domestic service, sometimes as a result of human trafficking (7, 15, 20-22)
Use in the production of pornography (7, 12, 15, 22)
Use of child soldiers as combatants, guides, messengers, and porters, sometimes as a result of forced recruitment (15, 18, 22-26)
Forced begging* (12)
Trafficking of drugs (2, 12, 13)

*Evidence of this activity is limited and/or the extent of the problem is unknown.
†Determined by national law or regulation as hazardous and, as such, relevant to Article 3(d) of ILO C. 182.
‡Child labor understood as the worst forms of child labor per se under Article 3(a) - (c) of ILO C. 182.

Children, primarily girls, are trafficked from rural to urban areas for domestic service and commercial sexual exploitation.(15, 18, 20, 22) Emerging reports indicate that boys are increasingly trafficked for commercial sexual exploitation, particularly for child pornography.(22) The Philippine National Police (PNP) noted that child trafficking for labor is prevalent from Lanao del Sur Province in Mindanao.(12, 27)

Children commonly work as domestic servants or kasambahays.(1, 17-19) Many child domestics work long hours, and their isolation in homes creates the potential for sexual harassment and verbal and physical abuse.(11, 17, 18, 20, 28) Child domestic servants are often denied access to education.(3, 18, 19, 28) Domestic workers sometimes receive no pay, have some of their wages withheld, or work as forced laborers.(11, 17, 19, 22, 28)

Child soldiering is a problem, particularly among anti-government and terrorist organizations.(7, 15, 20, 22-24, 29) Sources indicate that children continue to be found in the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) working as guides, messengers, and porters.(2, 7, 22-24, 30-32) In early 2014, the Government of the Philippines signed a peace agreement with the MILF, completing negotiations that had been ongoing for more than a decade.(33) At the time of writing this report, it is unknown how quickly children will be released from the ranks of the MILF. Children have also been reported in the Moro National Liberation Front where abductions have been reported, including for the use of children as human shields, as well as in the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters.(22, 23, 26, 34) While the National People's Army (NPA) has indicated a willingness to stop the use of children, children continue to be found in the NPA's ranks.(15, 22-24, 30, 31) The UN has reported that children are targeted for conscription as both combatants and non-combatants by the Abu Sayyaf Group.(7, 15, 21-24, 31) The UN has raised concerns about the use of children by security forces of the state.(7)

Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines in late 2013, leaving behind devastation that affected millions of people.(35) Prior to the typhoon, children already were involved heavily in agriculture, and the loss of family livelihoods and incomes increases the possibility that children will engage in hazardous work.(36) Adult migration for work and displacement from homes may make children more exposed to exploitation in hazardous work or human trafficking.(36)



II. Legal Framework for the Worst Forms of Child Labor

The Philippines has ratified all key international conventions concerning child labor (Table 3).

Table 3. Ratification of International Conventions on Child Labor
Convention Ratification
ILO C. 138, Minimum Age
ILO C. 182, Worst Forms of Child Labor
UN CRC
UN CRC Optional Protocol on Armed Conflict
UN CRC Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography
Palermo Protocol on Trafficking in Persons

The Government has established relevant laws and regulations related to child labor, including its worst forms (Table 4).

Table 4. Laws and Regulations Related to Child Labor
Standard Yes/No Age Related Legislation
Minimum Age for Work Yes 15 Labor Code; An Act Instituting Policies for the Protection and Welfare of Domestic Workers (37, 38)
Minimum Age for Hazardous Work Yes 18 Labor Code (38)
List of Hazardous Occupations Prohibited for Children Yes   Republic Act No. 679, as further amended by Presidential Decree No. 148, Woman and Child Labor Law, Department Order 4 (39)
Prohibition of Forced Labor Yes   Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012, Republic Act No. 10364 (40)
Prohibition of Child Trafficking Yes   Act Providing for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor and Affording Stronger Protection for the Working Child, Republic Act No. 9231; Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012; Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act (40-42)
Prohibition of Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children Yes   Act Providing for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor and Affording Stronger Protection for the Working Child; Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act; Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009, Republic Act No. 9775; Cybercrime Prevention Act (15, 41-43)
Prohibition of Using Children in Illicit Activities Yes   Act Providing for the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor and Affording Stronger Protection for the Working Child, Republic Act No. 9231; Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act; Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act (41, 42, 44)
Minimum Age for Compulsory Military Recruitment Yes 18 Memorandum Circular No. 13 on Selective Enlistment/Reenlistment of the Department of National Defense and the Armed Forces of the Philippines; Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act (41, 45)
Minimum Age for Voluntary Military Service Combat: Yes 18 17 Memorandum Circular No. 13 on Selective Enlistment/Reenlistment of the Department of National Defense and the Armed Forces of the Philippines; 2003 Declaration on Ratifying the Optional Protocol (25, 45)
Non-Combat: Yes
Compulsory Education Age Yes 18 Enhanced Basic Education Act of 2013 (46)
Free Public Education Yes   Philippine Constitution (47)

Child labor laws include written protections for children in the formal sector; however, it is not clear whether these protections extend to children who are self-employed.(5)

Although the law mandates free education, many children do not attend school because the costs of books, uniforms, meals, and transportation are prohibitive for many families.(1, 2, 19, 48) In addition, distant school locations are often not accessible for rural students, especially at the secondary school level.(7, 48, 49)

During the reporting period, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) worked with stakeholders to update the country's hazardous work list for children, DOLE Department Order No. 4.(39, 50-52) In conjunction with the update, the Institute of Labor Studies and the Occupational Safety and Health Center conducted in-depth studies in hazardous work in agriculture, specific to child labor.(51, 53) The draft report is expected to be issued in 2014, and the results of this study will be used to inform future interventions to reduce child labor in agriculture in the Philippines.(51)

In February 2013, the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2012 was signed into law as Republic Act No. 10364.(38) This Act amends Republic Act No. 9208 of 2003 to establish a permanent Interagency Council Against Trafficking with a staffed secretariat to carry out the mandate; create a database on trafficking cases; expand provisions to protect victims of trafficking; and establish stronger penalties for violations, including those against children.(2, 12, 40, 54)

In August 2013, the President issued Executive Order No. 138, Adopting the Comprehensive Program Framework for Children in Armed Conflict, Strengthening the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) and for Other Purposes. This also formalized the establishment of a Monitoring, Reporting and Response System for Grave Child Rights Violations in Situations of Armed Conflict (MRRS-GCRVSAC). This system will monitor the program framework with the primary objective of preventing the occurrence of grave child rights violations.(12)



III. Enforcement of Laws on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

The Government has established institutional mechanisms for the enforcement of laws and regulations on child labor, including its worst forms (Table 5).

Table 5. Agencies Responsible for Child Labor Law Enforcement
Organization/Agency Role
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Bureau of Working Conditions (BWC) Enforce child labor laws and regularly train inspectors and regional personnel. Inspect establishments and monitor compliance with labor laws in all sectors, including the informal sector, nontraditional and informal establishments, and agricultural and mining operations.(12)
Rescue the Child Laborers (Sagip Batang Manggagawa - SBM) Quick Action Teams Lead the regional mechanism for rescuing children who work in abusive and dangerous situations under DOLE.(13) Partner with local representatives of various government agencies, local NGOs, labor unions, and the business community in a cooperative effort to detect, monitor, and respond to instances of child labor in the formal and informal sectors.(12)
Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Rehabilitate and reintegrate children.(2, 13) Coordinate regional Special Action Units to conduct rescue operations for child laborers and cooperate with social workers to manage the ongoing cases of victims.(13) Maintain 16 Crisis Intervention Units and 26 residential facilities nationwide to address cases of child abuse and support its victims, including children exploited by hazardous labor.(12)
Philippine National Police (PNP) Investigate and prosecute child labor cases.(22, 55) Lead the enforcement of child trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) laws as well as other tasks related to the protection of children by the PNP's Women and Children's Protection Center.(12) Maintain 1,909 women and children's desks throughout the country.(13, 22)
National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Investigate and prosecute child labor cases.(22, 55) Operate a national Trafficking in Persons Task Force (TIP Task Force) to do preliminary investigations and prosecute TIP cases, as well as a Task Force on the Protection of Children from Exploitation and Abuse.(22, 56)
Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) Enforce the Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act, Republic Act No. 9165. Maintain a national hotline for reporting cases of children used in illicit activities.(2) Coordinate with DSWD to assist during rescue operations once information is verified through surveillance.(12)

Law enforcement agencies in the Philippines took actions to combat child labor, including its worst forms.

Labor Law Enforcement

In January 2013, the President approved the hiring of 372 more Labor Law Compliance Officers (LLCO), to be added to the existing 237 officers employed by the Department of Labor and Employment's Bureau of Working Conditions (DOLE-BWC). (12, 52) As of March 31, 2014, a total of 337 new officers had been hired.(52) LLCOs were authorized to monitor and enforce the national Labor Code, including child labor laws; however, no officers were dedicated solely to investigations of child labor violations.(12) DOLE regularly includes a child labor component in its training for labor inspectors.(12)

DOLE's National Capital Region office reported nine child labor cases involving 27 minors as a result of rescue operations conducted in seven restaurants and karaoke (KTV) bars, one junkshop, and one laundry shop.(12) The establishments are now facing criminal proceedings.(12) Sagip Batang Manggagawa (SBM) teams conducted 11 rescue operations in eight regions that led to the rescue of 37 child laborers. These child laborers were then referred to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for rehabilitation and reintegration.(12)

Criminal Law Enforcement

During the reporting period, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) received 126 suspected human trafficking cases, 40 involving the trafficking of minors. As a result of NBI's rescue operations, 46 minors were removed and assisted.(12) In total, the Government convicted 32 traffickers in 20 cases for violating the anti-trafficking law with 16 of the cases involving the trafficking of minors.(12) Overall, a lack of understanding of trafficking and the anti-trafficking legislation among many judges, prosecutors, social service workers, and law enforcement officials have impeded more successful prosecutions.(57) No prosecutions of police complicit with traffickers have been reported.(20) Many cases of trafficking of minors, particularly for child labor, continue to be undocumented for fear of retaliation from employers.(12, 27)

In 2013, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) identified 147 minors involved in illegal drugs as users, pushers, couriers, messengers, and cultivators.(12) PDEA was not able to confirm the total number of drug-related cases involving children, and no children were convicted.(12) No officers were trained on child labor and other related laws, including the use of children in illicit activities, during the year.(12)

In September 2013, the DSWD assisted 537 child victims of child labor, illegal recruitment, and trafficking, of whom 472 were victims of trafficking.(12, 27) In 2013, six cases on the recruitment and use of children in armed conflict were reported to the CWC through the MRRS-GCRVSAC.(12) Minor victims were referred to DSWD. No prosecutions were reported for the recruitment and use of children in armed conflict.(12)

Law enforcement agencies do not have the funding to combat trafficking or the use of children in illicit activities. Also, the limited number of law enforcement agents dedicated expressly to child trafficking and the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) continued to hinder the government's ability to investigate and prosecute complaints and violations.(12) The PNP noted that child protection at the grassroots level remains weak as many local councils for the protection of children lack the resources to address issues.(12)



IV. Coordination of Government Efforts on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

The Government has established mechanisms to coordinate its efforts to address child labor, including its worst forms (Table 6).

Table 6. Mechanisms to Coordinate Government Efforts on Child Labor
Coordinating Body Role & Description
National Child Labor Committee (NCLC) Coordinate national efforts to combat child labor under DOLE.(13) Promote information sharing at the national level; this coordinating mechanism has been replicated at the regional and provincial levels.(2) Comprise more than 15 agencies and NGOs.(13)
Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) Coordinate, monitor, and oversee ongoing implementation of efforts to combat trafficking in persons, including child trafficking. Co-chaired by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and DSWD, work with other government agencies and two NGOs representing women and children.(2, 12, 22, 56) Currently has 15 anti-trafficking task forces established in eight regions and three major airports.(12)
Interagency Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) Operate a monitoring and response system through its Subcommittee on Children Affected by Armed Conflict and Displacement for situations of children engaged in armed conflict, including recruitment and use of child soldiers.(22)
Inter-agency Committee on Children Involved in Armed Conflict (IAC CIAC) Advocate for protecting children and preventing the involvement of children in armed conflict. Composed of 13 government agencies and chaired by CWC.(12) Work under the direct supervision of the CWC as the lead agency in implementing the CIAC Program Framework, to address the involvement of children in armed conflict.(12)
24/7 Actionline against Human Trafficking Under IACAT, receive and immediately respond to requests for assistance and referrals from trafficking victims, their families, and the public.(12) In 2013, received 57 calls assessed as actual cases involving illegal recruitment or trafficking, three of which involved minors.(12)

During the reporting period, the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC) and its subcommittees met several times to plan and develop the NCLC Strategic Plan, 2014-2016.(12) The NCLC also supported the national celebration of World Day Against Child Labor in Manila with DOLE and ILO-IPEC.(58) DOLE also conducted trainings for the NCLC sub-committee members on the use of the Child Labor Knowledge Sharing System (CLKSS), an information technology tool used by child labor program coordinators to serve as an anti-child labor data hub.(12)

In 2013, the Government doubled the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking's (IACAT's) operational budget to $2.35 million.(12) IACAT conducted trainings and seminars on the expanded anti-trafficking law for Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors, judges, and other law enforcers in Manila and in selected provinces.(12) The mechanism whereby public prosecutors work directly with the police in developing stronger cases against traffickers continued to be very effective during the year.(12) Government social workers continued to be assigned at international airports to improve victim identification and assistance.(12) Child victims were referred to appropriate services at the Government's centers and facilities or facilities run by NGOs.(12)

During the year, the Interagency Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC), with its partner agencies, conducted orientation workshops on the Protocol on Monitoring, Reporting and Response System for Grave Child Rights Violations in Situations of Armed Conflict (MRRS-GCRVSAC) in seven regions nationwide. Front line workers, including social workers, teachers, police officers, and health workers, participated in the workshops.(12)



V. Government Policies on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

The Government of the Philippines has established policies related to child labor, including its worst forms (Table 7).

Table 7. Policies Related to Child Labor
Policy Description
Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan (2011-2016) Specifies government commitments to strengthen mechanisms for monitoring the implementation of child protection laws, to develop strategies to respond to child trafficking and pornography, and to implement an enhanced program for preventing children from being engaged in armed conflict.(2)
Philippine Labor and Employment Plan (PLEP) 2011-2016 Operates within the framework of the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan (MTPDP) and includes the goal of reducing exploitive child labor.(2, 12)
National Strategic Framework for Plan Development for Children, 2000-2025 ("Child 21")* Sets out broad goals for national government agencies, local governments, and NGOs to achieve improved quality of life for Filipino children by 2025.(13, 56, 59)
Philippine Program Against Child Labor (PPACL) Strategic Framework Lays out a blueprint for reducing the incidence of child labor by 75 percent.(13, 60, 61) Identifies concrete objectives through the Implementation Plan (2011-2013), such as improving access for children and their families to appropriate services to help prevent incidences of child labor and to reintegrate former child laborers.(13, 62) Includes the Convergence Action Plan (H.E.L.P. M.E.)†(Health, education, livelihood and prevention, protection and prosecution, monitoring, and evaluation), which aims to reduce the worst forms of child labor by 2016 and to remove 893,000 children from hazardous child labor across 15,568 target barangays.(61, 63) Has been allocated $220 million for implementation over 4 years, from 2013 to 2016.(27, 63, 64) Includes the Batang Malaya Child Labor-Free Philippines Campaign, which institutionalizes the Survey on Children to be regularly conducted by the Government; mainstreams child labor prevention into local development plans; adds child labor elimination as a requirement in conditional cash transfer programs; strengthens the labor inspectorate to monitor child labor; improves enforcement of Republic Act No. 9231; and strengthens the NCLC through a legal mandate, budget, and dedicated secretariat.(65)
National Strategic Action Plan Against Trafficking in Persons (2012-2016) Contains specific provisions on preventing trafficking of children, including raising awareness and creating local programs to prevent children from being lured by traffickers.(2, 12)
National Development Agendas* Includes reducing and eliminating child labor in the Millennium Development Goals (2000-2015), Education for All National Plan (2004-2015), Basic Education Reform Agenda, and UN Development Assistance Framework.(13, 66-68)

*The impact of this policy on child labor does not appear to have been studied.
†Policy was launched during the reporting period.



VI. Social Programs to Address the Worst Forms of Child Labor

In 2013, the Government of the Philippines funded and participated in programs that include the goal of eliminating or preventing child labor, including its worst forms (Table 8).

T able 8. Social Programs to Address Child Labor

Program Description
Conditional Cash Transfer program (Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program)‡ DSWD and Local Government Unit social assistance and development program that provides conditional grants to impoverished families with children from newborn to age 17 to improve their access to health care, adequate nutrition, and education.(12, 13, 69, 70) In 2013, was expanded to specifically target households of child laborers.(58, 64) Also expanded child eligibility from age 14 to age 17 and added a condition prohibiting hazardous child labor as a program requirement.(58, 64) Provided education grants to 7.37 million children as of September and health grants to 2.13 million children aged 0-5.(12) Budget was increased from $9.94 million in 2012 to $10.41 million in 2013; however, funding remains insufficient to fully address the scope of the problem.(12)
Alternative Learning System (ALS) Program*‡ Department of Education program that offers non-formal education to out-of-school children, including child laborers, as well as opportunities to attain a certificate of education equivalency.(71) Has limited resources, represents less than 1 percent of the Department of Education's budget, and has only one teacher for every 24 communities, so cannot reach many out-of-school youth.(48, 67)
Social Amelioration Program (SAP)*‡ Department of Labor and Employment, National Tripartite Council, and Sugar Industry program that provides a cash bonus to sugar workers and funds social protection, livelihood, and education programs for sugar workers and their families through a tax imposed on refined sugar.(72, 73) The Integrated Services for Migratory Sugar Workers Program (I-SERVE SACADAS) program under the SAP seeks to improve the livelihoods of migrant sugar workers and their families as well as increase income.(13, 73) Includes services such as educational materials and scholarships.(55, 67) Also provides skills training and other capacity-building opportunities to beneficiaries through DOLE's Bureau of Workers and Special Concerns and DOLE regional offices.(12)
DOLE Child Labor Prevention and Elimination Program(CLPEP)‡ DOLE program that implements local awareness-raising campaigns, institutes child labor monitoring mechanisms, and requires barangays to develop child labor elimination plans with short- and long-term objectives.(74) Includes the Campaign for Child-Labor Free Barangays, which seeks to make villages child labor-free through community orientations on child labor and trafficking laws, and government livelihood programs and guidelines.(12, 20, 27) Provides direct services to child laborers and targets children at greatest risk of involvement in child labor. In 2013, had 139 barangays enrolled in the campaign. Also includes the Livelihood for Parents of Child Laborers (KASAMA) program, which provides funds to parents of working children for projects such as raising livestock, producing souvenirs, food vending, and other service professions.(55, 67, 74) A third component, Project Angel Tree, redistributes shoes, school bags, toys, and other supplies donated by private sponsors to children at risk of, or engaged in, child labor.(13, 55, 67) Sources indicate that the program's budget is not sufficient compared to the size of the problem.(12)
Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons(RRPTP)‡ DSWD and IACAT program that provides services to victims of trafficking and raises awareness in vulnerable communities. Includes services such as shelters, crisis intervention, awareness campaigns, and residential facilities.(13, 21, 22)
Special Social Services for Children in Armed Conflict‡ DSWD program that provides special services to protect and rehabilitate children after direct or indirect involvement in armed conflict.(75) Includes services such as emergency evacuation and rescue; family reunification; provision of food, clothing, and shelter; and psychosocial rehabilitation.(55)
National Plan of Action for Children(NPAC) Approved by the Council for the Welfare of Children, is designed to continue and implement Child 21.(56) Connected to the Philippine Development Plan 2011-2016 with three strategic components: policy and legislative agenda, programs and strategies, and governance.(56)
Towards a Child Labor-Free Philippines: Supporting the 'Philippine Program Against Child Labor' in Building on Past Gains and Addressing Challenges $4.75 million USDOL-funded, 4-year project implemented by the ILO to withdraw children or prevent them from entering the worst forms of child labor. The project concluded in December 2013, and targeted children engaged in farming, mining, fishing, and domestic work. It withdrew and prevented nearly 10,000 children through providing educational and non-educational services in Quezon, Masbate, Northern Samar, and Bukidnon.(51, 61, 76) Developed the Child Labor Knowledge Sharing System (CLKSS) in collaboration with government agencies and participated in the development of the Convergence Action Plan (H.E.L.P. M.E.). (51, 61)
Philippines ABK3 LEAP - Livelihoods, Education, Advocacy, and Protection to Reduce Child Labor in Sugarcane $15 million USDOL-funded, 4-year project implemented by World Vision to reduce child labor in sugar-producing areas in 11 provinces of the Philippines.(77) Seeks to provide education services to 52,000 children engaged in, or at risk of engaging in, the worst forms of child labor, and to provide livelihood assistance to 25,000 households of targeted children. Engages the sugar industry in raising awareness of child labor among sugar workers and their families.(77)
Global Action Program on Child Labor Issues USDOL-funded project implemented by the ILO in approximately 40 countries to support the priorities of the Roadmap for Achieving the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor by 2016 established by the Hague Global Child Labor Conference in 2010. Aims to to build the capacity of the national government and develop strategic policies to address the elimination of child labor, improve the evidence base on child labor through data collection and research, and strengthen legal protections and social service delivery for child domestic workers in the Philippines.(78)
Country Level Engagement and Assistance to Reduce (CLEAR) Child Labor† USDOL-funded capacity building project implemented by the ILO in at least 10 countries, to build local and national capacity of the Government to address child labor. Aims to improve legislation addressing child labor issues, including by bringing local or national laws into compliance with international standards, improve monitoring and enforcement of laws and policies related to child labor, develop, validate, adopt, and implement a National Action Plan on the elimination of child labor, and enhance the implementation of national and local policies and programs aimed at the reduction and prevention of child labor in the Philippines.(79)

*The impact of this program on child labor does not appear to have been studied.
†Program was launched during the reporting period.
‡Program is funded by the Government of the Philippines.

During the reporting period, the DSWD conducted several rounds of surveys to evaluate how the conditional cash transfer program impacted its beneficiaries.(12) Initial evaluation findings indicated that, overall, the program is helping to keep poor children in school, by increasing enrollment among young children (3-11 years old) and increasing attendance among 6- to 17-year-olds.(12) A separate evaluation conducted by the Philippine Institute of Development Studies and released in February 2013 showed that the program has led to an increase in school attendance rate of children aged 6-14 by 3.5 percent.(12)



VII. Suggested Government Actions to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Based on the reporting above, suggested actions are identified that would advance the elimination of child labor, including its worst forms, in the Philippines (Table 9).

Table 9. Suggested Government Actions to Eliminate Child Labor, Including Its Worst Forms
Area Suggested Action Year(s) Suggested
Enforcement Ensure that child labor legislation is enforced effectively by identifying, through inspections, children who are engaged in the worst forms of child labor, including recruitment of children for armed conflict. 2009 - 2010, 2012 - 2013
Expand training on trafficking and anti-trafficking legislation for judges, prosecutors, social service workers, and law enforcement officers to ensure more successful prosecutions; also conduct training on child labor laws and the worst forms of child labor, including the use of children in illicit activities. 2013
Prioritize child labor and trafficking cases to provide timely prosecutions and convictions and to ensure that convictions help to deter further violations. 2011 - 2013
Dedicate law enforcement agents to child trafficking and CSEC issues so they may effectively investigate and prosecute those issues. 2013
Government Policies Assess the impact that existing policies may have on addressing child labor. 2013
Social Programs Conduct research to determine the types of activities carried out by children working in the production of other fruits and vegetables and construction to inform policies and programs. 2013
Take steps to ensure that all children have access to schools and do not face prohibitive costs for education-related expenses. 2010 - 2013
Provide necessary resources to help more out-of-school youth access ALS to complete their basic education. 2011 - 2013
Assess the impact that existing social programs may have on child labor. 2011 - 2013



1. ILO-IPEC. Baseline Survey for the ILO-IPEC TBP Phase 2. Draft Report. Manila; 2011.

2. U.S. Embassy- Manila. reporting, February 1, 2013.

3. Bureau of Labor and Employment Statistics. Profile of Working Children in the Philippines. Labstat Updates; March 2011. Report No. Vol. 15 No. 5. [source on file].

4. ILO, Philippine National Statistics Office. 2011 Survey on Children. Manila; June 26, 2012. http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---asia/---ro-bangkok/---ilo-manila/documents/meetingdocument/wcms_184097.pdf.

5. ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Observation concerning Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138) Philippines (ratification: 1998) Published: 2012; accessed December 1, 2013; http://www.ilo.org/ilolex/english/iloquery.htm.

6. National Statistics Office. The Number of Working Children 5 to 17 Years Old is Estimated at 5.5 Million (Preliminary Results of the 2011 Survey on Children), [online] July 18, 2012 [cited February 14, 2013]; http://www.census.gov.ph/content/number-working-children-5-17-years-old-estimated-55-million-preliminary-results-2011-survey.

7. U.S. Department of State. "Philippines," in Country Reports on Human Rights Practices- 2013. Washington, DC; February 27, 2014; http://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/hrrpt/humanrightsreport/index.htm.

8. UNESCO Institute for Statistics. Gross intake ratio to the last grade of primary. Total. [accessed February 10, 2014]; http://www.uis.unesco.org/Pages/default.aspx?SPSLanguage=EN . Data provided is the gross intake ratio to the last grade of primary school. This measure is a proxy measure for primary completion. For more information, please see the "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" section of this report.

9. UCW. Analysis of Child Economic Activity and School Attendance Statistics from National Household or Child Labor Surveys. Original data from Labour Force Survey-Child Labour Survey, 2001. Analysis received February 13, 2014. Reliable statistical data on the worst forms of child labor are especially difficult to collect given the often hidden or illegal nature of the worst forms. As a result, statistics on children's work in general are reported in this chart, which may or may not include the worst forms of child labor. For more information on sources used, the definition of working children and other indicators used in this report, please see the "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" section of this report.

10. ECLT Foundation. Agriculture and Tobacco, 2010 [cited February 14, 2013]; [source on file].

11. World Vision Development Foundation. ABK2 Initiative Job Hazard Analysis in Worst Forms of Child Labor; 2009.

12. U.S. Embassy- Manila. reporting, January 17, 2014.

13. U.S. Embassy- Manila. reporting, January 24, 2012.

14. FAO, ILO. Good Practice Guide for Addressing Child Labor in Fisheries and Aquaculture: Policy and Practice (Preliminary Version). Geneva; December 2011. ftp://ftp.fao.org/FI/DOCUMENT/child_labour_FAO-ILO/child_labour_FAO-ILO.pdf.

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