Tajikistan: The cost of male migration is in child labour

Tajikistan has a population of approximately 7,627, 200 , and children aged 0 – 14 years account for 33.9% of the total population. The children of Tajikistan are largely affected by the labour migration that has faced the country in the recent past. The absence of adequate job opportunities compels citizens to migrate, mainly to Russia, for work. There are rural districts in Tajikistan from which virtually the entire male population has left to work abroad, leaving the women as breadwinners of their families.

Children are directly affected as they end up dropping out of schools and engaging in the worst forms of child labour. In some cases, they combine the 4-6 hours of education provided with hard and prolonged labour. Non-return of parents leads to children being sent to special institutions or exposing them to child protection risks.

Child labour, including bonded labour, continues to be a concern despite a favourable legal environment. With deteriorating living conditions, children are forced to work to support their families. Approximately 200,000 children aged 5 to 14 are involved in child labour, with 65,000 working with no remuneration. 10% of these children do not study .

In a country with many needs and harsh living conditions, children are carrying an undue burden. Pray for children, for those who will work for development in the nation to release children from the burden they bear.

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