Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Cameroon

Child Labor and Forced Labor Reports

Cameroon

2017 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor:

Moderate Advancement

In 2017, Cameroon made a moderate advancement in efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. The government increased the number of labor inspectors by almost one-third, convened a 3-day interim assessment of the Decent Work Country Program, and earmarked $18,000 for the Ministry of Labor and Social Security to revise the hazardous work list in 2018. The government also provided education to 93,190 children ages 3 to 17 living in internally displaced person or refugee camps and nearly doubled the total number of project participants in its Social Safety Nets program to 411,048 individuals. However, children in Cameroon engage in the worst forms of child labor in commercial sexual exploitation and perform dangerous tasks in cocoa production. The government has not acceded to the UN CRC Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, nor has it prohibited the use of children in illicit activities, including the production and trafficking of drugs.

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Children in Cameroon engage in the worst forms of child labor, including in commercial sexual exploitation and perform dangerous tasks in cocoa production. (1; 2; 3) Table 1 provides key indicators on children’s work and education in Cameroon.

Table 1. Statistics on Children’s Work and Education

Children

Age

Percent

Working (% and population)

5 to 14

56.2 (unavailable)

Attending School (%)

5 to 14

79.7

Combining Work and School (%)

7 to 14

52.7

Primary Completion Rate (%)

 

75.4

Source for primary completion rate: Data from 2015, published by UNESCO Institute for Statistics, 2016. (4)
Source for all other data: Understanding Children’s Work Project’s analysis of statistics from Enquête Démographique et de Santé et à Indicateurs Multiples, 2011. (5)

 

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 bananas, cocoa, palm oil, and tea, including handling pesticides, using machetes, clearing fields, climbing trees, and lifting heavy loads† (6; 7; 8; 9)

Raising livestock (9)

Fishing (10; 9; 7)

Industry

Working in artisanal gold mines† and gravel quarries,† transporting heavy loads† of sand or gravel, breaking stones, and digging or standing in stagnant water to extract minerals (8; 11; 10; 12; 3; 9)

Construction, including carrying heavy loads† of water, concrete, cement, and bricks (8; 11; 9)

Services

Domestic work (8; 11; 13; 9)

Working in restaurants and as phone booth operators (9)

Working in transportation (8; 9)

Street work, including carrying heavy luggage,† vending, and begging (7; 11; 14; 15; 16; 17; 9)

Voluntarily recruited children used in hostilities by state-armed groups (18; 9)

Categorical Worst Forms of Child Labor‡

Commercial sexual exploitation, sometimes as a result of human trafficking (2; 11; 14; 19; 20; 21; 3)

Recruitment of children by Boko Haram, a non-state armed group, for use in armed conflict, including as suicide bombers and concubines (22; 23; 3; 24; 25; 26)

Forced labor in agriculture in the production of cocoa, cotton, onions, and tea; fishing; livestock raising; domestic work; spare parts shops; in artisanal gold mines and gravel quarries; street vending; and construction, each sometimes as a result of human trafficking (11; 21; 27; 3)

Forced begging as talibés in Koranic schools (8; 28; 3)

† 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.

 

Cameroon is a source, transit, and destination country for child trafficking from neighboring countries in Central and West Africa. (8; 16; 3) Some traffickers have resorted to kidnapping children, as increased public awareness has resulted in fewer parents entrusting their children to intermediaries. (3) Children engaged in cocoa production are exposed to dangerous working conditions, including exposure to pesticides and the use of sharp tools such as machetes. (9) The NGO Child Soldiers International alleged that some officially sanctioned community neighborhood watch groups, known as vigilance committees, may have used and recruited children as young as age 12 in military operations against Boko Haram. (18)

Although Decree N° 2001/041 on the Organization of Public Schools guarantees free education in Cameroon, costs associated with education may be prohibitive to some families, as they are required to pay for uniforms, books, and other school-related fees. (7; 16; 29; 30; 31; 32; 33; 27) In addition, a lack of schools and teachers in rural areas, the absence of potable water and sanitation facilities, and long distances to schools also hinder access to education. (16; 31; 34; 35; 27; 9) Children in refugee camps may have a particularly difficult time accessing education due to a lack of school infrastructure, teachers, and resources to pay for school-related expenses. (31; 36; 37; 38; 39) In 2017, many schools in the Far North, North, East, and Adamaoua regions were closed due to attacks by Boko Haram and insecurity, or re-appropriation as refugee housing, military bases, or detention centers. (27; 40; 41; 29; 42; 1; 43; 44; 24) The government has begun reconstructing schools in the Far North region and providing textbooks to students, but some teachers are unwilling to work in areas affected by Boko Haram. Of the 124 schools that closed in the Far North, only 31 reopened for the 2017–2018 school year. (36; 40; 45; 46; 9) Since November 2016, the Anglophone Northwest and Southwest regions have experienced strikes and boycotts protesting systemic government discrimination against Anglophone speakers. This has disrupted schooling for children in these areas due to school closures, an absence of teachers, and voluntary or forced displacement as a result of the protest. (47; 48; 49; 50; 51; 52; 53) Children in refugee or internally displaced persons camps are particularly vulnerable to the worst forms of child labor, including commercial sexual exploitation. (9; 26)

Cameroon has ratified most 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 laws and regulations related to child labor, including in its worst forms (Table 4). However, gaps exist in Cameroon’s legal framework to adequately protect children from the worst forms of child labor, including the prohibition of using children in illicit activities and the compulsory education age.

Table 4. Laws and Regulations on Child Labor

Standard

Meets International Standards: Yes/No

Age

Legislation

Minimum Age for Work

Yes

14

Section 86 of the Labor Code; Article 2 of Order N° 017 on Child Labor (54; 55)

Minimum Age for Hazardous Work

Yes

18

Articles 9–23 of Order N° 017 on Child Labor; Section 86 of the Labor Code (54; 55)

Identification of Hazardous Occupations or Activities Prohibited for Children

Yes

 

Articles 9–23 of the Order on Child Labor (55)

Prohibition of Forced Labor

Yes

 

Sections 2–6 of the Law Relating to the Fight Against Trafficking in Persons and Slavery; Articles 11, 342-1, 352, and 353 of the Penal Code; Section 2 of the Labor Code (54; 56; 57)

Prohibition of Child Trafficking

No

 

Sections 2 and 4–6 of the Law Relating to the Fight Against Trafficking in Persons and Slavery; Articles 11, 342-1, and 352–354 of the Penal Code (56; 57)

Prohibition of Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children

Yes

 

Articles 294 and 344–347 of the Penal Code; Articles 76, 81, and 82 of the Law on Cybersecurity and Cybercriminality (56; 58)

Prohibition of Using Children in Illicit Activities

No

 

 

Prohibition of Military Recruitment

 

 

 

State Compulsory

Yes*

18

Article 12 of the Decree Concerning the Status of Non-Defense Military Personnel; Article 2a of the Decree Establishing the Conditions for Admission to Military Training Schools for Officers (59; 60)

State Voluntary

Yes

18

Article 12 of the Decree Concerning the Status of Non-Defense Military Personnel; Article 2a of the Decree Establishing the Conditions for Admission to Military Training Schools for Officers (59; 60)

Non-state

No

 

 

Compulsory Education Age

No

12‡

Preamble of the Constitution; Articles 9 and 16 of the Law Orienting the Education System (61; 62)

Free Public Education

Yes

 

Articles 46 (2), 47, and 48 of the Decree on the Organization of Public Schools (32)

* No conscription (63)
‡ Age calculated based on available information (29)

 

Human trafficking provisions remain discordant with international standards, as they require threats, the use of force, or coercion to be established for the crime of child trafficking, and individuals ages 16 to 18 are not considered children. (56; 57) In addition, the types of hazardous work prohibited for children under age 18 are not comprehensive, as work underwater or at dangerous heights are not prohibited. (13; 55) However, the government earmarked approximately $18,000 for the Ministry of Labor and Social Security (MINTSS) to revise the list in 2018. (9)

The government has established institutional mechanisms for the enforcement of laws and regulations on child labor (Table 5). However, gaps exist within the operations of MINTSS that may hinder adequate enforcement of their child labor laws.

Table 5. Agencies Responsible for Child Labor Law Enforcement

Organization/Agency

Role

Ministry of Labor and Social Security (MINTSS)

Lead efforts to enforce all labor laws, including those related to child labor, promote decent working conditions, and lead the National Committee to Combat Child Labor (CNLCTE). (7; 64)

Ministry of Justice (MOJ)

Prosecute cases referred by the General Delegate for National Security (DGSN) or the Ministry of Defense’s National Gendarmerie (SED) and contribute to investigations as appropriate. (65)

Ministry of Social Affairs (MINAS)

Lead efforts to combat human trafficking. Provide social services through its National Referral System. (7; 66; 67; 9) Through its Minors Brigade, support local police in their investigations of child trafficking and the use of children in hazardous work. (68) Through its Joint Mobile Brigade, prevent and combat the phenomenon of street children through identification, reintegration, and education; reintegrated street children assist in the Joint Mobile Brigade’s work. (69)

Ministry of Women’s Empowerment and Family (MINPROFF)

Promote and protect the rights of the child. (7)

General Delegate for National Security (DGSN)

Enforce laws against the worst forms of child labor and investigate violations in urban areas. (65) Through its Special Vice Squad, investigate cases of human trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation, and other forms of abuse against women and children. (65; 13) Refer cases to the MOJ or Ministry of Defense for investigation by the National Gendarmerie. (69)

Ministry of Defense’s National Gendarmerie (SED)

Investigate cases of child trafficking and commercial sexual exploitation in both urban and rural areas before referring cases to MOJ for prosecution. (69)

 

Although it does not play a direct role in enforcement, Cameroon’s National Commission on Human Rights and Freedoms advises government ministries on the enforcement of laws related to child labor and advocates for sanctions as appropriate. (9; 70) Local representatives from the Ministry of Territorial Administration may settle child labor disputes amicably or refer the case to the SED, DGSN, or MOJ for further investigation and prosecution. (69)

Labor Law Enforcement

In 2017, labor law enforcement agencies in Cameroon took actions to combat child labor (Table 6). However, gaps exist within the operations of MINTSS that may hinder adequate labor law enforcement, including financial and human resource allocation.

Table 6. Labor Law Enforcement Efforts Related to Child Labor

Overview of Labor Law Enforcement

2016

2017‡

Labor Inspectorate Funding

$635,610 (71)

Unknown* (9)

Number of Labor Inspectors

80 (65)

132 (9)

Inspectorate Authorized to Assess Penalties

Yes (54)

Yes (54)

Training for Labor Inspectors

 

 

Initial Training for New Employees

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Training on New Laws Related to Child Labor

No (65)

N/A (9)

Refresher Courses Provided

Unknown (65)

Yes (9)

Number of Labor Inspections Conducted

Unknown* (65)

1,777 (9)

Number Conducted at Worksites

Unknown* (65)

Unknown* (9)

Number of Child Labor Violations Found

Unknown* (65)

0 (9)

Number of Child Labor Violations for Which Penalties were Imposed

Unknown* (65)

N/A (9)

Number of Child Labor Penalties Imposed that were Collected

Unknown* (65)

N/A (9)

Routine Inspections Conducted

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Routine Inspections Targeted

Unknown (65)

Yes (9)

Unannounced Inspections Permitted

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Unannounced Inspections Conducted

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Complaint Mechanism Exists

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Reciprocal Referral Mechanism Exists Between Labor Authorities and Social Services

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

* The government does not publish this information.
‡ Data are from January 1, 2017, to October 31, 2017. (9)

 

 

 

Although the government significantly increased its number of labor inspectors from 2016, it is still likely insufficient for the size of Cameroon’s workforce, which includes over 9 million workers. (72; 9; 65) According to the ILO’s technical advice of a ratio approaching 1 inspector for every 15,000 workers in industrializing economies, Cameroon should employ roughly 644 labor inspectors. (72; 73; 74) Furthermore, inspectors are tasked with reconciliation duties, which may detract from time devoted to their primary duties, and labor inspections are not conducted in the informal sector where the majority of child labor occurs. (75; 54) In general, the Labor Inspectorate lacked resources during the reporting period, and field inspectors in particular lacked transportation. However, the 2018 budget includes funding to purchase vehicles for some divisions with heavy workloads. (29; 9)

In an attempt to increase its scope, the Ministry of Social Affairs, Interpol, and the General Delegate for National Security all maintain hotlines for reporting the worst forms of child labor, which are then routed to the National Referral System for assistance to victims. (27; 13; 26) However, the system has not been well-publicized since it was established in 2013, leaving the public unaware of its existence, and some calls may go unanswered. (26) Research was unable to determine how many cases of child labor were identified as a result of complaints made to these lines.

Criminal Law Enforcement

In 2017, criminal law enforcement agencies in Cameroon took actions to combat child labor (Table 7). However, gaps exist within the operations of the criminal enforcement agencies that may hinder adequate criminal law enforcement, including financial resources and collaboration between ministries.

Table 7. Criminal Law Enforcement Efforts Related to Child Labor

Overview of Criminal Law Enforcement

2016

2017

Training for Investigators

 

 

Initial Training for New Employees

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

Training on New Laws Related to the Worst Forms of Child Labor

No (65)

N/A (9)

Refresher Courses Provided

No (65)

No (26)

Number of Investigations

13 (76; 71)

0 (9)

Number of Violations Found

119 (65; 71)

Unknown

Number of Prosecutions Initiated

9 (76; 71)

0 (9)

Number of Convictions

Unknown (76)

0 (9)

Reciprocal Referral Mechanism Exists Between Criminal Authorities and Social Services

Yes (65)

Yes (9)

 

It is unclear how many investigators the government employed in 2017, although several government bodies work together to enforce criminal laws related to the worst forms of child labor. In general, these agencies do not receive adequate funding or training to investigate the worst forms of child labor, and high staff turnover is a challenge. (29; 77; 3; 9) As a result, NGOs are critical in bringing child trafficking cases to the government’s attention and providing services to victims. (3; 69) With the assistance of the EU and IOM, the government repatriated at least 55 children from Libya and Niger who were at risk of child trafficking for forced labor or commercial sexual exploitation, and provided them with social services upon their return. (26)

The government acknowledges that a lack of awareness of child trafficking issues may prevent citizens from reporting offenses to enforcement agencies and that children may be afraid to speak against perpetrators in court. (3) The ongoing participation of lawyers in the Anglophone protests also impacted the ability of victims to seek justice and may have contributed to delayed court proceedings, including those related to the alleged complicity of government officials in a child trafficking ring. (26) However, the preliminary inquiry was completed in 2017. (69) A lack of collaboration between NGOs and the government, combined with judicial inefficiencies, led some cases to be settled outside the judicial system. (3; 77) Although the government generally considers children to be victims rather than offenders, isolated reports indicate that the government has held children as young as age 5 in detention facilities for prolonged periods due to suspicion of being affiliated with Boko Haram elements, or to prevent them from being recruited into Boko Haram. (78; 42; 79; 80; 43; 18; 81; 70)

The government has established mechanisms to coordinate its efforts to address child labor (Table 8). However, gaps exist that hinder the effective coordination of efforts to address child labor, including coordination among agencies.

Table 8. Key Mechanisms to Coordinate Government Efforts on Child Labor

Coordinating Body

Role and Description

National Committee to Combat Child Labor (CNLCTE)

Coordinate government efforts to combat child labor, propose measures to harmonize Cameroon’s legal framework to international standards, and implement the National Plan of Action to Combat Child Labor and Trafficking in Children (PANETEC). (64; 82; 83) Led by MINTSS, includes representatives from 10 other ministries and government bodies. (64; 82)

Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC)

Coordinate government efforts to combat human trafficking. Chaired by the Secretary General of the Office of the Prime Minister, includes members of eight ministries, law enforcement personnel, civil society organizations, and NGOs. (3; 26) Oversee Regional Taskforces on Trafficking in Persons in Northwest, Southwest, and Littoral Provinces. (3; 84) In 2017, began consultations in anticipation of drafting a new Trafficking in Persons Action Plan for 2017–2019 and convened five times, including one meeting with NGOs to improve collaboration. (77; 9; 70; 26)

 

Poor communication hampered government efforts to adequately combat human trafficking as actions by member ministries of the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) were not always communicated to the secretariat. (26) In addition, only the Northwest Regional Taskforce was active during the reporting period; the Southwest and Littoral Regional Taskforces were inactive due to a lack of resources. (70)

The government has established policies related to child labor (Table 9). However, policy gaps exist that hinder efforts to address child labor, including implementation.

Table 9. Key Policies Related to Child Labor

Policy

Description

MOJ’s National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in Cameroon (2015–2019)

Aims to combat exploitative child labor by disseminating standard operating procedures for the National Referral System, raising awareness about how to identify and report cases of child trafficking, increasing punishments for offenders, and building the capacity of labor inspectors. (65; 85; 86) Also aims to improve access to education for vulnerable groups by increasing the number of teachers and classrooms, establishing a legal framework to regulate parent-teacher associations, and increasing the rate of educational attainment for girls. (86) Research was unable to determine if this policy was active during the reporting period.

Decent Work Country Program (2014–2017)

Incorporated child labor concerns into the strategy for work. (6) In March 2017, convened a 3-day interim assessment and provided training to labor inspectors, including child labor issues. (9)

 

Although the Action Plan to Combat Child Labor and Trafficking in Children (PANETEC) expired in 2016, before its official adoption in October 2017, the government of Cameroon updated the PANETEC objectives and implementing mechanism as part of its commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals. (9; 70) Although the Trafficking in Persons Action Plan (2014–2019) does not receive dedicated funding, member ministries of the IMC use their ministry funds to carry out activities in support of the Action Plan. (69) The government is drafting a new Trafficking in Persons Action Plan for 2017–2019. (70) The government has not included child labor elimination and prevention strategies into the PRSP (2010–2020), the UNICEF Country Program Action Plan (2013–2017), or the IMC’s National Gender Policy Document (2011–2020). (87; 88; 89)

In 2017, the government funded and participated in programs that may contribute to eliminating or preventing child labor (Table 10). However, gaps exist in these social programs, including adequacy of programs to address the full scope of the problem.

Table 10. Key Social Programs to Address Child Labor‡

Program

Description

Project to Fight the Phenomenon of Street Children (Project 559)†

MINAS-funded program that provides street children with health care, education, and psychosocial care. (29; 33; 9) Through its partnership agreement PAIRPPEV with the National Employment Fund, supports the reintegration of street children and provides vocational training opportunities. (9) In 2017, MINAS conducted awareness-raising activities about the negative impacts of child labor and conducted a 2-week campaign in the capital to round up children under age engaged in street vending. The children were released to their parents, who were informed about the risks of child labor. (26)

Country Program Action Plan (2013–2017)

UNICEF- and MINAS-implemented program that aimed to improve social protection and preventive health care and ensure access to primary education. (1; 89) In 2017, Nascent Solutions converted its school feeding program to a Village Mobile Reading Program due to prolonged school closures in the Northwest; its literacy initiative served over 18,000 students per month. (9)

School Feeding Program

$12 million U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program, which improves literacy and nutrition in 92 primary schools, benefitting 40,000 children in the Northwest region. (65; 9)

Services for Displaced or Refugee Children†

UNICEF programs that provide educational services to children affected by conflict, including: CARED2, which offers accelerated education curriculums for children in refugee camps in the Far North; ETAPES, which establishes temporary schools and protection centers in Adamawa and East regions; and the Child Protection and Education Project, which works with Catholic Relief Services in the East to enroll and retain refugee children in schools. (90) In 2017, provided education to 93,190 children ages 3 to 17 living in internally displaced persons or refugee camps. (90) The government also built eight schools in the Far North region for Nigerian refugees. (9)

World Bank Projects

Aim to provide social safety nets and improve educational outcomes, including Social Safety Nets (2014–2018), a $50 million program by the Ministry of Economy, Planning, and Regional Development to provide direct cash transfers to vulnerable families for healthcare and education expenses; and the Equity and Quality for Improved Learning Project (2014–2018), a $55.8 million program by the Ministry of Basic Education to distribute textbooks for grades 1 to 3, promote girls’ education, increase the number of teachers in Cameroon, and improve access to primary education as part of the Education for All initiative. (91; 92; 35) In 2017, the Social Safety Nets expanded to include 6,000 participants in the Far North who are affected by displacement due to Boko Haram activities, and nearly doubled the total number of project participants to 411,048 individuals by September 2017. (93; 94) The Education project increased the number of contracted teachers from 2,970 to 5,898 and reduced the ratio of students to textbooks from 6:1 to 4:1 in 2017. (95)

Cameroon Institute of Childhood (ICE) Rehabilitation Project (2017–2020)*†

$2.9 million project financed by MINAS and its partners to rehabilitate a center in Betamba, which serves children in conflict with the law and provides vocational training to area youth. The government contributed $552,000 in 2017 and pledged $1.1 million in 2018. (9) One of several centers for vulnerable children operated by MINAS. (26)

* Program was launched during the reporting period.
† Program is funded by the Government of Cameroon.
‡ The government had other social programs that may have included the goal of eliminating or preventing child labor. (14; 3)

 

Although the government has implemented programs to assist victims of child trafficking and children engaged in street work and domestic work, the scope of these programs is insufficient and does not fully address the extent of the problem. (1; 76) Government-run centers can temporarily house victims, but space is insufficient. (96; 77; 26) In addition, research did not find evidence of programs to specifically address child labor in agriculture, mining, and quarrying.

Based on the reporting above, suggested actions are identified that would advance the elimination of child labor in Cameroon (Table 11).

Table 11. Suggested Government Actions to Eliminate Child Labor

Area

Suggested Action

Year(s)

Legal Framework

Accede to the Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography.

2013 – 2017

Criminally prohibit the use of children for illicit activities, including in the production and trafficking of drugs.

2014 – 2017

Ensure that the law criminally prohibits the recruitment of children under age 18 by non-state armed groups.

2016 – 2017

Establish a minimum age for compulsory education that is consistent with the minimum age for admission to work.

2009 – 2017

Ensure that laws prohibiting child trafficking do not require threats, the use of force, or coercion to be considered child trafficking and that all children under age 18 are protected.

2015 – 2017

Ensure that the hazardous occupations and activities prohibited for children are comprehensive and include work underwater and at dangerous heights.

2014 – 2017

Enforcement

Collect and publish comprehensive statistics on enforcement efforts, including Labor Inspectorate funding, the number of inspections conducted at worksites, and number of criminal labor law violations found.

2009 – 2017

Significantly increase the number of labor inspectors according to the ILO’s technical advice.

2009 – 2017

Ensure that the Labor Inspectorate and criminal law enforcement agencies receive an adequate amount of funding, training, and resources with which to conduct inspections and investigations.

2009 – 2017

Strengthen the Labor Inspectorate by conducting inspections in all sectors, including in the informal sector.

2013 – 2017

Ensure all hotlines for reporting the worst forms of child labor are well-publicized, operational, and log all calls so that cases of child labor may be tracked for referral to law enforcement or social services providers.

2015 – 2017

Raise awareness of child trafficking issues to encourage citizens to report offenses to enforcement agencies and ensure that such cases are resolved within the judicial system.

2016 – 2017

Ensure that children are not held in detention without reasonable evidence of wrongdoing.

2015 – 2017

Coordination

Ensure that existing coordinating mechanisms function effectively and receive sufficient resources to carry out their stated mandates.

2014 – 2017

Government Policies

Ensure that existing policies, such as the Ministry of Justice's National Action Plan for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in Cameroon (2015–2019) and the IMC's Trafficking in Persons Action Plan (2014–2019), receive adequate funding and are implemented as intended.

2016 – 2017

Integrate child labor elimination and prevention strategies into the PRSP and the IMC’s National Gender Policy Document.

2010 – 2017

Social Programs

Ensure that all children, regardless of refugee status, have access to education by eliminating school-related fees and teacher strikes, and ensure that schools are not re-appropriated for other purposes.

2009 – 2017

Ensure that the number of schools, teachers, potable water, and sanitation facilities are adequate throughout the country.

2009 – 2017

Expand existing programs to address the scope of the child labor problem in Cameroon and institute programs to address child labor in agriculture, mining, and quarrying.

2009 – 2017

Ensure that all government-run centers have sufficient space to accommodate victims.

2016 – 2017

1. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé. Reporting, June 9, 2017.

2. Statistics, Government of Cameroon - National Institute of. Etude Pilote sur l'Exploitation Sexuelle Commerciale des Enfants au Cameroun en 2010. 2010. http://www.statistics-cameroon.org/downloads/CSEC/Note_synthese_Rapport_CSEC.pdf.

3. U.S. Department of State. Trafficking in Person Report- 2017: Cameroon. Washington, DC. June 27, 2017. https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/271341.pdf.

4. UNESCO Institute for Statistics. Gross intake ratio to the last grade of primary education, both sexes (%). Accessed March 3, 2018. http://data.uis.unesco.org/. For more information, please see "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" in the Reference Materials section of this report.

5. UCW. Analysis of Child Economic Activity and School Attendance Statistics from National Household or Child Labor Surveys. Original data from Enquête Démographique et de Santé et à Indicateurs Multiples, 2011. Analysis received January 12, 2018. Please see "Children's Work and Education Statistics: Sources and Definitions" in the Reference Materials section of this report.

6. ILO. Equipe d’Appui Technique au Travail Décent pour l’Afrique Centrale et Bureau Pays pour l'Angola, le Cameroun et São Tomé & Príncipe. Programme Pays pour le Travail Décent (PPTD) 2014-2017. 2014. http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_mas/---program/documents/genericdocument/wcms_560913.pdf.

7. Government of Cameroon. Plan d'Action National pour l'Elimination des Pires Formes de Travail des Enfants au Cameroun (PANETEC) (2014-2016). Ministere du Travail et de la Securite Sociale (MINTSS). 2014. [Source on file].

8. ILO Committee of Experts. Provisional Record: Third item on the agenda: Information and reports on the application of Conventions and Recommendations - Report of the Committee on the Application of Standards. June 2015. http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_norm/---relconf/documents/meetingdocument/wcms_375764.pdf.

9. U.S. Embassy-Yaoundé. Reporting, January 4, 2018.

10. Ngapout, Assiatou. Cameroun: La lutte s’intensifie contre travail des enfants. Cameroon Tribune. April 30, 2015. http://www.cameroon-info.net/article/cameroun-la-lutte-sintensifie-contre-travail-des-enfants-242769.html.

11. National Commission on Human Rights and Freedoms. Report on the State of Human Rights in Cameroon in 2013. 2015. [Source on file].

12. Kouagheu, J. Au Cameroun, avec les enfants chercheurs d’or de Bétaré-Oya. January 11, 2016. http://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2016/01/11/au-cameroun-avec-les-enfants-chercheurs-d-or-de-betare-oya_4845234_3212.html.

13. ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Observation concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Cameroon (ratification: 2002) Published: 2016. Accessed October 20, 2016. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=1000:13100:0::NO:13100:P13100_COMMENT_ID:3248783.

14. —. Individual Direct Request concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Cameroon (ratification: 2002) Published: 2015. Accessed November 13, 2015. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=1000:13100:0::NO:13100:P13100_COMMENT_ID:3184659.

15. Kindzeka, Moki Edwin. Cameroon Teachers Celebrate Teachers Day Amid Growing Challenges. October 5, 2015. http://www.voanews.com/content/teachers-celebrate-teachers-day-amid-growing-challenges/2991709.html.

16. ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Direct Request concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Cameroon (ratification: 2002) Published: 2016. Accessed October 20, 2016. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=1000:13100:0::NO:13100:P13100_COMMENT_ID:3248780.

17. Camernews. Jobs de vacances, le travail forcé des enfants, une implacable réalité. June 27, 2017. http://www.camernews.com/cameroun-jeunesse-jobs-de-vacances-le-travail-force-des-enfants-une-implacable-realite/.

18. Child Soldiers International. Submission to the 75th pre-session of the Committee on the Rights of the Child: CAMEROON. August 2016. https://www.child-soldiers.org/Handlers/Download.ashx?IDMF=19c99637-7122-4356-927e-4748db4d617f.

19. Statistics, Government of Cameroon - National Institute of. Pires Formes de Travail des Enfants: Enquete Pilote sur l'Exploitation Sexuelle Commerciale des Enfants au Cameroun en 2010. December 2011. http://www.minas.gov.cm/images/Documents/Rapports/Rapport_CSEC_Cameroun_les_pires_formes_de_travail_des_enfants.pdf.

20. Ondoua Owona, J.J. Cameroun: Exploitation sexuelle des enfants. August 27, 2015. http://www.camer.be/44877/11:1/cameroun-exploitation-sexuelle-des-enfants-cameroon.html.

21. ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Observation concerning Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) Cameroon (ratification: 2002) Published: 2015. Accessed November 13, 2015. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=1000:13100:0::NO:13100:P13100_COMMENT_ID:3184662.

22. Le Monde. Cinq enfants tués dans un attentat-suicide au Cameroun. November 1, 2017. http://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2017/11/01/cinq-enfants-tues-dans-un-attentat-suicide-au-cameroun_5208742_3212.html.

23. VOA. Girl Suicide Bomber Kills 5 in Cameroon Mosque. September 13, 2017. https://www.voanews.com/a/girl-suicide-bomber-kills-five-cameroon-mosque/4027789.html.

24. UNICEF. Silent Shame: Bringing out the voices of children caught in the Lake Chad crisis. April 12, 2017. https://www.unicef.org/wcaro/nigeriaregionalcrisis/UNICEF_Silent_shame.pdf.

25. —. Children under attack at shocking scale in conflicts around the world, says UNICEF. December 28, 2017: Press release. https://www.unicef.org/media/media_102357.html.

26. U.S. Embassy- Yaounde. Reporting, February 13, 2018.

27. UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. Concluding observations on the combined third to fifth periodic reports of Cameroon. July 6, 2017: CRC/C/CMR/CO/3-5. http://docstore.ohchr.org/SelfServices/FilesHandler.ashx?enc=6QkG1d%2fPPRiCAqhKb7yhsgv0eNCYtyyNQsBlq2fF1%2bBLDR%2btER74itJ0ekjDjz4wbI4fgfYv642MhmsNay7kgdHmU0BVFjhTNRQG79Bfnc8Lx9UXstSXIc94LO60XZTy.

28. Bouba, B. Les talibés de Maroua (Cameroun): évaluation des besoins en éducation et des stratégies de prise en charge. Revue Petite Enfance, N° 00 (April 2013): 38-61. http://fastef.ucad.sn/PEnfance/bachir_bouba.pdf.

29. U.S. Department of State. Country Reports on Human Rights Practices- 2016: Cameroon. Washington, DC. March 3, 2017. https://www.state.gov/documents/organization/265446.pdf.

30. Cheumani Noudjieu, Charlotte. AUDIT SOCIAL EN FAVEUR DES INDIGENTS ET DES POPULATIONS AUTOCHTONES - Volume 1: Évaluation sociale. Government of Cameroon and World Bank. February 25, 2016. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/193251468019812343/pdf/SFG1882-V1-IPP-FRENCH-P156679-PUBLIC-Disclosed-2-25-2016.pdf.

31. Guilbert, K. Child marriage threatens future of young Central African Republic refugees in Cameroon. November 8, 2016. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-cameroon-centralafrica-refugees-idUSKBN1330G0.

32. Government of Cameroon. Décret N° 2001/041 portant organisation des établissements scolaires publics et attributions des responsables de l'administration scolaire. Enacted: 2001. Source on file.

33. UN Committee on the Rights of the Child. Summary record of the 2215th meeting. June 6, 2017: CRC/C/SR.2215. http://docstore.ohchr.org/SelfServices/FilesHandler.ashx?enc=6QkG1d%2fPPRiCAqhKb7yhsialUb%2bZGftp59yZHGEX78%2bmK4fCPd4WsGJAm8Om8X%2bkjzUuzZh%2bjYtuHUKqFoxnr%2fPaVvDNVRr4inNKVg%2bjNQ8Y9qbGgtWeSYf1hTZNdOKe.

34. UNESCO. Global Education Monitoring Report 2016. 2016. http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002457/245752e.pdf.

35. World Bank. Equity and Quality for Improved Learning Project - Project Information Document (Appraisal Stage). 2014. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/328391468231306998/pdf/PID-Appraisal-Print-P133338-11-25-2013-1385413976914.pdf.

36. UNICEF. Nigeria conflict forces more than 1 million children from school. December 22, 2015. http://www.unicef.org/media/media_86621.html.

37. —. The Impact of Boko Haram and Armed Conflict on Schooling in Cameroon’s Far North. February 2015. http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/CMRFarNorthEduction-Rapid_Assessment2015Final%281%29.pdf.

38. Kindzeka, Moki Edwin. CAR Refugees Face Difficult Living Conditions in Cameroon. August 17, 2015. http://www.voanews.com/content/difficult-living-conditions-for-car-refugees-in-cameroon/2921047.html.

39. —. Cameroon Communities, Refugees at Odds Over Food Shortages. May 15, 2017. http://www.voanews.com/a/cameroon-communities-refugees-odds-food-shortages/3852101.html.

40. UNICEF. Beyond Chibok: Over 1.3 million children uprooted by Boko Haram violence. April 2016. http://files.unicef.org/media/files/Beyond_Chibok.pdf.

41. UN Security Council. Report of the Secretary-General on the situation in Central Africa and the activities of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa. May 25, 2016. http://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2016/482.

42. Amnesty International. CAMEROON: HUMAN RIGHTS UNDER FIRE: ATTACKS AND VIOLATIONS IN CAMEROON'S STRUGGLE WITH BOKO HARAM. September 16, 2015. https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/afr17/1991/2015/en/.

43. —. CAMEROON'S SECRET TORTURE CHAMBERS: HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS AND WAR CRIMES IN THE FIGHT AGAINST BOKO HARAM. July 20, 2017. https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/afr17/6536/2017/en/.

44. Kindzeka, Moki Edwin. Cameroon's Military Moves In on Separatist-held Villages. December 7, 2017. https://www.voanews.com/a/cameroon-military-moves-in-on-separatist-held-villages-/4153553.html.

45. —. Tens of Thousands of Cameroon Students Without Teachers. October 5, 2016. http://www.voanews.com/a/tens-of-thousands-of-carmeroon-students-without-teachers/3538243.html.

46. Kindzeka, Moki. After Boko Haram terror, Cameroon's 'ghost towns' come back to life. June 1, 2017. http://www.dw.com/en/after-boko-haram-terror-cameroons-ghost-towns-come-back-to-life/a-39067479.

47. International Crisis Group. Cameroon’s Anglophone Crisis at the Crossroads. August 2, 2017: Africa Report N°250. https://d2071andvip0wj.cloudfront.net/250-cameroons-anglophone-crisis-at-the-crossroads_0.pdf.

48. Kindzeka, Moki Edwin. Cameroon School Set on Fire as Anglophone Strike Deepens. August 23, 2017. https://www.voanews.com/a/cameroon-school-set-fire-anglophone-strike-deepens/3997440.html.

49. Reuters. Boycott leads to heavy security in schools in Cameroon's anglophone region. September 5, 2017. http://www.africanews.com/2017/09/05/boycott-leads-to-heavy-security-in-schools-in-cameroon-s-anglophone-region//.

50. Tih, Felix Nkambeh. Ghost town operations resume in West Cameroon. September 1, 2017. http://aa.com.tr/en/africa/ghost-town-operations-resume-in-west-cameroon/723613.

51. UN Security Council. Report of the Secretary-General on the situation in Central Africa and the activities of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa. May 31, 2017: S/2017/465. http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2017/465.

52. Kindzeka, Moki Edwin. Cameroon Gripped By Second Teachers Strike. March 28, 2017. http://www.voanews.com/a/cameroon-teachers-strike/3785249.html.

53. Carsten, Paul. At least 15,000 Cameroonian refugees flee to Nigeria amid crackdown. January 11, 2018. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-cameroon-separatists-nigeria/at-least-15000-cameroonian-refugees-flee-to-nigeria-amid-crackdown-idUSKBN1F01Q6.

54. Government of Cameroon. Labour Code Law N° 92/007 of 14 August 1992. Enacted: August 14, 1992. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/natlex/docs/WEBTEXT/31629/64867/E92CMR01.htm.

55. —. Arrêté N° 17 du 27 mai 1969 relatif au travail des enfants. Enacted: May 27, 1969. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/natlex/docs/SERIAL/17964/15795/F1498839332/CMR-17964.pdf.

56. —. Law N° 2016/007 of 12 Juil 2016 Relating to the Penal Code. Enacted: July 12, 2016. http://www.wipo.int/edocs/lexdocs/laws/en/cm/cm014en.pdf.

57. —. Law N° 2011/024 of 14 December 2011 Relating to the Fight Against Trafficking in Persons and Slavery. Enacted: December 14, 2011. http://www.justiceandpeacebamenda.org/attachments/article/24/THE+LAW+AGAINST+TRAFFICKING+IN+PERSONS+AND+SLAVERY.pdf.

58. Republique du Cameroun. LOI N°2010/012 DU 21 DECEMBRE 2010 RELATIVE A LA CYBERSECURITE ET LA CYBERCRIMINALITE AU CAMEROUN. Enacted: December 21, 2010. https://www.unodc.org/res/cld/document/cmr/2010/loi_sur_la_cybersecurite_et_la_cybercriminalite_html/Loi_2010-012_cybersecurite_cybercriminalite.pdf.

59. Government of Cameroon. Décret N° 2001/190 du 25 Juillet 2001 portant Statut particulier des personnels militaires non Officiers des Forces de Défense. Enacted: July 25, 2001. Source on file.

60. —. Décret N° 2001/187 du 25 Juillet 2001 fixant les conditions de recrutement et d'admission dans les Ecoles Militaires de Formation des Officiers. Enacted: July 25, 2001. Souce on file.

61. —. Law N° 96-06 of 18 January 1996 to amend the Constitution of 2 June 1972. Enacted: January 18, 1996. http://www.icla.up.ac.za/images/constitutions/cameroon_constitution.pdf.

62. —. LOI N°98/004 DU 4 AVRIL 1998 D’ORIENTATION DE L’EDUCATION AU CAMEROUN. Enacted: April 14, 1998. http://www.unesco.org/education/edurights/media/docs/3fbc027088867a9096e8c86f0169d457b2ca7779.pdf.

63. —. Ratification with Declaration on the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict on March 4, 2013. Enacted: 2013. https://treaties.un.org/doc/Publication/UNTS/No%20Volume/27531/A-27531-Cameroon-0800000280351c59.pdf.

64. —. Arrêté N° 082/PM du 27 août 2014 portant création, organisation et fonctionnement du comité national de lutte contre le travail des enfants. Enacted: August 27, 2014. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/natlex/natlex4.detail?p_lang=en&p_isn=96921.

65. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé. Reporting, December 15, 2016.

66. Government of Cameroon, Ministry of Social Affairs. Inventory of Fixtures, Actions and Challenges. [Source on file].

67. Government of Cameroon, Ministry of Social Affairs,. Protection spéciale de l'enfance. [Source on file].

68. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé. Reporting, December 22, 2014.

69. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé Official. E-mail communication to U.S. DOL Official. May 4, 2018.

70. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé official. E-mail communication to USDOL official. January 11, 2018.

71. —. E-mail communication to USDOL official. April 24, 2017.

72. CIA. The World Factbook. https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2095rank.html. Please see “Labor Law Enforcement: Sources and Definitions” in the Reference Materials section of this report.

73. ILO. Strategies and pactice for labour inspection. November 2006. http://www.ilo.org/public/english/standards/relm/gb/docs/gb297/pdf/esp-3.pdf. Please see “Labor Law Enforcement: Sources and Definitions” in the Reference Materials section of this report.

74. UN. World Economic Situation and Prospects 2017 Statistical Annex. 2017. https://www.un.org/development/desa/dpad/wp-content/uploads/sites/45/publication/2017wesp_full_en.pdf. Please see "Labor Law Enforcement Sources and Definitions" in the Reference Materials section of this report.

75. ILO Committee of Experts. Individual Observation concerning Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138) Cameroon (ratification: 2001) Published: 2015. Accessed November 13, 2015. http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=1000:13100:0::NO:13100:P13100_COMMENT_ID:3184639.

76. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé. Reporting, February 16, 2017.

77. —. Reporting, October 25, 2017.

78. Amnesty International. CAMEROON: RIGHT CAUSE, WRONG MEANS: HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATED AND JUSTICE DENIED IN CAMEROON'S FIGHT AGAINST BOKO HARAM. July 14, 2016. https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/afr17/4260/2016/en/.

79. —. AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL REPORT 2015/16: THE STATE OF THE WORLD'S HUMAN RIGHTS. February 23, 2016. https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/pol10/2552/2016/en/.

80. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé official. E-mail communication to USDOL official. January 13, 2017.

81. Sixtus, Mbom. Boko Haram Still a threat to refugees in Cameroon. January 11, 2017. http://www.irinnews.org/feature/2017/01/11/boko-haram-still-threat-refugees-cameroon.

82. Mevengue, A. Lutte contre le Travail des enfants - La réponse nationale, Ministère du Travail et de la Sécurité Sociale. http://mintss.gov.cm/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=61&Itemid=243&lang=fr.

83. ILO-IPEC. Global Action Program on Child Labor Issues. April 2015: Technical Progress Report. [Source on file].

84. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé. Reporting, October 27, 2017.

85. —. Reporting, January 29, 2016.

86. Ministère de la Justice. NATIONAL PLAN OF ACTION FOR THE PROMOTION AND PROTECTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS IN CAMEROON (2015-2019). December 2015. http://minjustice.gov.cm/pdf_download/droit_homme/plan_action/minjustice_national_plan_of_action_english_version.pdf.

87. Government of Cameroon, Ministry of Women's Empowerment and Family. National Gender Policy of Cameroon. 2015. http://mudecgroup.org/?p=786.

88. International Monetary Fund. Cameroon: Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper. August 2010: Project Document. http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/scr/2010/cr10257.pdf.

89. UNICEF. Republic of Cameroon: Country programme document 2013-2017. 2012. http://www.unicef.org/about/execboard/files/2012-PL35_Cameroon_CPD-final_approved-English.pdf.

90. —. Cameroon: Humanitarian Situation Report. August 2017. https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/UNICEF%20Cameroon%20Humanitarian%20Sitrep%20August%202017.pdf.

91. World Bank. World Bank to Help Build Safety Net System Aimed at Reducing Poverty and Vulnerability in Cameroon. March 21, 2013. http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/press-release/2013/03/21/world-bank-help-build-safety-net-system-aimed-reducing-poverty-vulnerability-cameroon.

92. Hegba, Odilia. A Cash Transfer Program Improves the Lives of Cameroon’s Poorest Families. March 3, 2016. http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2016/03/03/a-cash-transfer-program-improves-the-lives-of-cameroons-poorest-families.

93. World Bank. Cameroon Social Safety Nets (P128534). September 21, 2017: Implementation Status & Results Report. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/434961506031758249/pdf/Disclosable-Version-of-the-ISR-Cameroon-Social-Safety-Nets-P128534-Sequence-No-09.pdf.

94. —. Cameroon Social Safety Nets (P128534). May 23, 2017: Implementation Status & Results Report. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/588401495575765048/pdf/ISR-Disclosable-P128534-05-23-2017-1495575755334.pdf.

95. —. Equity and Quality for Improved Learning Project (P133338). December 5, 2017: Implementation Status & Results Report. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/806851512517195868/pdf/Disclosable-Version-of-the-ISR-CAMEROON-Equity-and-Quality-for-Improved-Learning-Project-P133338-Sequence-No-08.pdf.

96. U.S. Embassy- Yaoundé official. E-mail communication to USDOL official. December 19, 2016.

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