Child Labor Quick Facts
- The International Labor Office estimates that 246 million children between the ages of 5 and 17 are engaged in child labor. (The End of Child Labour: Within Reach, International Labour Office, May 2006)
- An estimated 14 percent of children in India ages 5-14 are engaged in child labor activities, including carpet production. (The State of the World’s Children 2006, UNICEF)
- Children trafficked into one form of labor may be later sold into another as with girls from rural Nepal, who are recruited to work in carpet factories, but are then trafficked into the sex industry over the border in India. (Helping Hands or Shackled Lives? Understanding Child Domestic Labour and Responses to It, ILO/IPEC, Geneva, June 2004)
- Females make up about a quarter of the carpet weavers in Pakistan, the majority of who are less than age 15. (A Rapid Assessment of Bonded Labour in the Carpet Industry of Pakistan, International Labour Office, March 2004)
- Young children whose parents take money in advance for their work on carpet looms are victims of the “peshgi” or debt-bondage system in Pakistan. They are paid half the wages of older workers and are not allowed to leave the premises until the debt is fully paid. Older workers sexually abuse these children. (A Rapid Assessment of Bonded Labour in the Carpet Industry of Pakistan, International Labour Office, March 2004)
- Experts estimate that child labor on South Asia’s carpet looms has dropped from 1 million to 300,000 since the launch of RugMark in 1995.