Of the estimated 215 million children worldwide who toil as child laborers, more than half engage in
hazardous work. These children labor in mines, factories and fields, get sent into wars and sold into
prostitution. Child labor cripples and sickens children, robs them of an education, and traps them in the
same daily struggle for survival faced by their parents and grandparents.
Our vision at the Department of Labor is “Good Jobs for Everyone,” which includes breaking the cycle of
poverty for families so that children do not have to work. Through the Bureau of International Labor
Affairs, we are working to protect children internationally from hazardous work and nurture them to
reach their full potential as productive members of society.
We are proud to be part of the U.S. Government’s first Action Plan on Children in Adversity. The
challenges vulnerable children confront are so multifaceted and intertwined that our solutions must be
too. By drawing on expertise from across the government, pursuing evidence-based policies and
programs and integrating our efforts through the Action Plan, the U.S. Government can maximize the
impact of its programs. Together we can create brighter futures for all vulnerable children, including a
future free of the worst forms of child labor
Last updated: December 16, 2013