5 times Pope Francis denounced child labor

Jasjot Singh

Today, June 12, the World Day Against Child Labor is celebrated, something that Pope Francis has referred to on numerous occasions.

1. A scourge that hurts dignity

In November 2021, Pope Francis assured that “child labour, especially when it manifests itself as exploitation, is a scourge that cruelly harms the dignified existence and harmonious development of the smallest”.

He did so in a message addressed to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), where he said that this exploitation “severely limits your future opportunitiessince it reduces and harms his life to satisfy the productive and lucrative needs of adults”.

“For many of these little brothers of ours, missing school means not only losing opportunities that enable them to face the challenges of adulthood, but also becoming ill, that is, being deprived of the right to health, due to the deplorable conditions in which they have to carry out the tasks that are vilely demanded of them”, he lamented.

2. “A plague that must be eradicated”

“Child labor exploitation is a plague that must be eradicated”; this was expressed by Pope Francis on November 19, 2021 in the audience he granted to the members of the International Conference “Eradicate child labor, build a better future”.

In his address, the Holy Father noted that “the scourge of child labor exploitation is particularly importance for the present and for the future of our humanity”.

“The way we relate to children, the extent to which we respect their innate human dignity and fundamental rights, express what kind of adults we are and want to be, and what kind of society we want to build.”

3. Children under inhumane conditions

In the general audience of June 10, 2020, the Pontiff highlighted that “in the current health emergency situation, in several countries many children and young people are forced to do work inappropriate for their age, in order to help their families in conditions of extreme poverty.

4. Enslaved and fugitives

In addition, in April 2021, the Pope lamented that despite the fact that the world “has developed the most sophisticated technologies, there are still unfortunately so many children in inhuman conditions, exploited, mistreated, enslaved, fugitives. Of this we are ashamed today before God.”

5. Children are the future

On the day against child labor in 2021, the Pope assured that “children are the future of the human family: it is up to all of us to promote their growth, their health and their serenity,” he defended.

According to the report Child Labor: Global Estimates 2020, Trends and the Way Forward, published on June 9, 2021 by the United Nations on the occasion of the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, “160 million children” are victims of child labour. children, and of these, “79 million perform hazardous work”.

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