Suriname on child labour watch list

(de Ware Tijd) PARAMARIBO – The United States Department of Labour claims Suriname still offers little protection against child labour, and has therefore added Suriname, South Sudan and Vietnam to the list of 74 countries in which child labour and human trafficking are a serious problem.

The Labour Department also acknowledges, however, that the international economic crisis is slowing efforts to eradicate such child abuses by 2016. A report about the situation in Suriname states that children work in gold mines, where they are exposed to mercury poisoning and extreme heat and are running the risk of being injured due to accidents or landslides.

The report also expresses concern about child prostitution in mining areas. Labour (ATM) Minister Michael Miskin doubts the veracity of the report, however, saying, “I’ve spoken with the Labour Inspectorate, the gold sector restructuring commission and the police who have visited these areas, and they claim this is not what they’ve found.” The Minister will consult with his counterpart of Foreign Affairs today to find out what information has been used to place Suriname on the watch list. “I personally think this is very strange,” Miskin says.

The Americans claim Suriname made minimal progress in 2011 to eliminate the worst forms of child labour, but has made efforts to raise awareness about human and child trafficking. Yet the country has no list of activities that are considered dangerous to children, and the minimum age for employment is not equal to the age for compulsory education. The report also claims Suriname has no national policy to combat child labor. Yvonne Caprino, manager of the Foundation Projects Protestant Christian Education Suriname, says Suriname’s placement on the list must be considered an alarm signal. In a first reaction, she calls the report’s contents “very serious,” but adds Suriname itself should investigate whether the information is correct. “If that is the case, we must do something about it.” Caprino also believes measures must be taken as long as child labor exists. “We must join hands and solve it together, because it is about our children, our country,” is her desperate cry.

Comments  

President’s appointment of GECOM Chair averted `looming constitutional crisis’ – AFC

The Alliance For Change (AFC) this evening said that President David Granger’s appointment of a chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission “has averted a looming constitutional crisis”.

President’s unilateral decision on GECOM Chair poses clear threat to democracy – private sector

The PSC Secretariat on Waterloo Street. The Private Sector Commission (PSC) today said that the President’s decision to unilaterally appoint a Chairman of GECOM poses a clear threat to democracy.

Belgian-based businessman challenges Grace Mugabe’s diamond ring claim

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace attend a meeting of his ruling ZANU PF party’s youth league in Harare, Zimbabwe, October 7, 2017.

Forced from rainforest, Peruvian tribe faces new woes in Lima slum

Vladimir Inuma, a deputy leader of an association of the 92 families who vow to stay put in the Cantagallo slum, poses for a portrait in downtown Lima, Peru, September 9, 2017.

President picks Justice Patterson, 84, as GECOM Chair

President David Granger yesterday unilaterally chose retired justice James Patterson, 84, to be Chairman of GECOM, rejecting a third list that had been submitted by Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo and plunging the country into its worst political crisis since APNU+AFC came to power in 2015.

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.

We built stabroeknews.com using new technology. This makes our website faster, more feature rich and easier to use for 95% of our readers.
Unfortunately, your browser does not support some of these technologies. Click the button below and choose a modern browser to receive our intended user experience.

Update my browser now

×