Taking action on Canada's child labour problem

Media Contact:

Brett Tarver
Manager, PR & Communications

brett_tarver@worldvision.ca
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Highlights:

Canadian imports of “risky products” now total $34B, a 31% increase over the past five years.
A young girl working in a shrimp processing plant in Bangladesh. Shrimp is a significant Canadian import with a high risk of child labour involved in its production. Photo/World Vision.
 
(October 16, 2018)
Canada’s Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development has issued a new report entitled: “A Call to Action: Ending the Use of All Forms of Child Labour in Supply Chains.” The report offers realistic solutions, including legislative action, that can and should be adopted to address child and forced labour in Canadian supply chains, according to World Vision, Canada’s largest international development and relief organization.
 
World Vision welcomes the report and urges the Government of Canada to immediately take the next critical steps by formally committing to working with civil society, trade unions, investors, and the private sector to design the right supply chain legislation for Canada.
 
“This report reconfirms that it’s time for the Government of Canada to introduce legislation to address the risk of child and forced labour in our supply chains,” says Michael Messenger, President of World Vision Canada. “After hearing children around the world, I can say with conviction that child labour is also a Canadian issue. There are at least 1,200 Canadian companies importing up to $34-billion in goods that may have been made by child or forced labourers overseas. It has to stop. Consumers, companies and governments should all play a part in addressing Canadian links to this global problem. Other countries are already taking action, Canada needs to commit to federal supply chain legislation or risk falling behind on promoting responsible business and human rights including the protection of children from exploitation and harm.”
 
FAST FACTS
  • Canadian imports of “risky products” now total $34B, a 31% increase over the past five years.
  • 91% of Canadians agree that the Canadian government should require companies to publicly report on who makes their products and what they are doing to reduce child labour in their supply chains
  • Canada risks falling behind in the global fight to eliminate child and forced labour in supply chains. Four significant jurisdictions, the UK, California, the Netherlands and France, have all passed legislation to address modern slavery and/or child labour in their supply chains
 
MEDIA RESOURCES
A Call to Action: Ending the Use of All Forms of Child Labour in Supply Chains: HERE
No Child for Sale digital media kit with photos, stories and reports on child labour: HERE
Background information on child labour in Canadian supply chains: HERE