Child Labor and Forced Labor Reports

Costa Rica

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Costa Rica
2019 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor:

Significant Advancement

In 2019, Costa Rica made a significant advancement in efforts to eliminate the worst forms of child labor. The government published data from the 2018 National Household Survey, which includes information on the prevalence of child labor in Costa Rica. In collaboration with the International Labor Organization, the Ministry of Labor began implementing the Risk Module for Identifying Child Labor, which assists government officials in targeting communities at greater risk of employing child labor. In addition, prosecutors obtained sentences for three individuals on charges pertaining to the commercial sexual exploitation of children, and the government passed new laws on trafficking in persons, including one that increased the statute of limitations for victims. The government also adopted a new 4-year National Plan for Development that includes strategies for addressing child labor. However, children in Costa Rica engage in the worst forms of child labor, including in commercial sexual exploitation, sometimes as a result of human trafficking. Children also engage in child labor in agriculture. Furthermore, existing social programs are not accessible to workers in all sectors and the labor inspectorate lacks the authority to assess penalties for labor violations.

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