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Turks and Caicos Islands


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2012 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

In 2012, the Turks and Caicos Islands made no advancement in efforts to prevent the worst forms of child labor. While there is no evidence of a problem, the Government lacks a complete, preventive legal framework. The Turks and Caicos Islands have not established a minimum age for performing hazardous work, leaving children under 18 vulnerable.

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Prevalence and Sectoral Distribution of the Worst Forms of Child Labor

There is no evidence that children in the Turks and Caicos Islands are engaged in the worst forms of child labor. However, anecdotal evidence suggests that the islands’ 2,000 stateless children may be vulnerable to trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation.(1)



Laws and Regulations on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Although the Turks and Caicos Islands is a territory of the United Kingdom (UK), it writes its own legislation and does not follow UK laws.(2, 3)

The minimum age for employment in the Turks and Caicos Islands is 16.(4)Children younger than age 16 may be employed with the written consent of a parent or guardian. Research found no evidence of a minimum age for hazardous work or a comprehensive list prohibiting children from hazardous work.

Slavery and forced labor are prohibited by the Constitution.(3)No information was found on whether laws exist regarding the use of children for drug trafficking or other illicit activities.

Defense in the Turks and Caicos Islands is the responsibility of the United Kingdom, and there is no military conscription. The minimum age for voluntary military recruitment is 16.(5, 6)

Education is compulsory through age 16.(7)Research did not find complete information on the question of whether education is free.



Institutional Mechanisms for Coordination and Enforcement

Since there is no evidence of a problem, there appears to be no need for a coordinating mechanism to address the worst forms of child labor.



Government Policies on the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Since there is no evidence of a problem, there appears to be no need for policies to address the worst forms of child labor.



Social Programs to Eliminate or Prevent the Worst Forms of Child Labor

The Government of Turks and Caicos continued to participate in the Safeguarding Children in the Overseas Territories (SCOT) Program through the program’s completion in October 2012.(8)The SCOT Program was sponsored by the UK’s Department for International Development. Through the SCOT Program, participating governments receive capacity building and advisory support to implement policies, procedures and best practices to ensure children’s health and safety.(9)



Based on the reporting above, the following actions would advance the elimination of the worst forms of child labor in Turks and Caicos Islands:

Area

Suggested Actions

Year(s) Action Recommended

Laws and Regulations

Establish a minimum age for hazardous work and a comprehensive list prohibiting children from hazardous work.

2011, 2012

Clarify whether laws exist regarding the use of children for drug trafficking or other illicit activities.

2011, 2012



1. U.S. Department of State. "Overseas Territories of the United Kingdom " in Trafficking in Persons Report- 2012. Washington, DC; June 19, 2012; http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/192598.pdf.

2. Dina, Y. "Guide to Caribbean Law Research." nyulawglobal.org [online] January/February 2010 [cited June 5, 2013]; http://www.nyulawglobal.org/globalex/caribbean1.htm.

3. Government of Turks and Caicos Islands. The Turks and Caicos Constitution Order 2011, enacted October 15, 2012. http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2011/1681/pdfs/uksi_20111681_en.pdf.

4. Government of Turks and Caicos. Turks and Caicos Islands Employment Ordinance 2004, enacted October 26, 2004. http://www.misickstanbrook.tc/articles/ordinances/Employment%20Ordinance/Employment%20Ordinance%202004.pdf.

5. Child Soldiers International. "Appendix II: Data Summary on Recruitment Ages of National Armies," in Louder than Words: An Agenda for Action to End State Use of Child Soldiers. London; September 2012; http://www.child-soldiers.org/global_report_reader.php?id=562.

6. Central Intelligence Agency. The World Factbook: Turks and Caicos Islands; accessed June 5, 2013; https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/tk.html.

7. Charts Bin. Ending Age of Compulsory Education Around the World- Turks and Caicos, [online] [cited February 22, 2011]; http://chartsbin.com/view/qpp.

8. U.S. Embassy- London. reporting, January 31, 2013.

9. U.S. Embassy- London. reporting, January 19, 2012.