The report The role of social protection in the elimination of child labour: Evidence review and policy implications presents evidence from a number of studies conducted since 2010 that show how social protection – by helping families cope with economic or health shocks – reduces child labour and facilitates schooling. It was published by the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in May 2022.
Too little progress has been made in ensuring that all children enjoy social protection. World-wide, 73.6 per cent, or some 1.5 billion children, aged 0-14 years, receive no family or child cash benefits. This large protection gap must be closed rapidly, the report says.
Governments have a range of policies they can deploy to promote social protection. If policymakers do not act decisively, the COVID-19 pandemic, ongoing conflict, rising poverty, and climate change will only increase the prevalence of child labour, according to the report.
To strengthen social protection systems for the prevention and elimination of child labour, the report makes a number of recommendations: