The 5th World Conference on the Elimination of Child Labor will begin in Durban on Sunday May 15 – International

Durban, South Africa (May 9, 2022) – The 5th Global Conference on the Elimination of Child Labor will be held in Durban, South Africa, from May 15-20, 2022.

The conference, organized in collaboration with the International Labor Organization (ILO), is taking place at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Center and will include in-person and online participation.

It comes at a critical time. Despite progress in many regions, the number of children in child labor is rising and the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to undo years of progress.

According to global estimates on child labour, published jointly by the ILO and UNICEF last year, 160 million children are working today. Without a breakthrough in the African region, the UN will not achieve target 8.7 of the Sustainable Development Goal.

The conference represents an opportunity to assess progress towards the achievement of Target 8.7, discuss good practices implemented by different actors across the world and identify gaps and urgent actions needed to accelerate the elimination of child labor and forced labour.

More than 2,000 attendees are registered for the in-person event, with another 5,000 expected to follow and engage through the online platform.

In Durban, representatives of governments, trade unions, the private sector, civil society, regional and international organizations, think tanks, universities, young people and children from around the world will organize plenaries, presentations and parallel events. Participating stakeholders include UNICEF, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the World Bank.

While only invited delegates will travel to Durban, the hybrid format means that a large number of people will be able to participate remotely. Some side events and presentations will be 100% virtual.

At the end of the conference, delegates will draft a Durban Call to Action – a commitment to take the necessary steps to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals and eliminate child labor in all its forms by 2025 .

Traditionally, the conference takes place every four years. This year marks the first time an African country has hosted the event. Previously, it was held in the Americas and Europe: in Buenos Aires in 2017, in Brasilia in 2013, in The Hague in 2010 and in Oslo in 1997.

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