Government of Trinidad and

Media Release - The Ministry of Labour warns against the employment of children below age 16

Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago

2021 has been declared the International Year for the Elimination of Child Labour, by the United Nations General Assembly. It is marked the year for action. 

The year in which countries worldwide are being urged to accelerate their efforts towards achieving Target 8.7 which aims to end Child Labour by globally by 2025.

Given the effects brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, children are at greater risk and as such, Minister of Labour, the Honourable Stephen Mc Clashie M.P. urges all citizens including employers and parents to adhere to the law by not allowing children below sixteen (16) years to work.

The Minister wishes to remind the population that Child Labour deprives children of their most basic rights to an education and childhood. It limits their potential and negatively affects them physically and mentally. Children can suffer long term effects to their health, dignity and mental well-being if they are placed in the labour force at an early age.

In response to a call by the International Labour Organization (ILO) for member states to pledge their commitment towards ending Child Labour, the following pledge statement and pledge action areas were put forward by the Ministry of Labour on behalf of Trinidad and Tobago:

“Trinidad and Tobago pledges to support and protect our nation's children and free them from all forms of Child Labour.

The following action areas are being embarked upon through the coordinated effort of the Ministry’s National Steering Committee for the Prevention and Elimination of Child Labour and the Labour Inspectorate Unit:

  • The development and implementation of a 6-Step Strategic Compliance model for the Labour Inspectorate Unit
  • The establishment of a Child Labour Protocol
  • The development of a light work and hazardous list by sector
  • The development of a situational analysis and conduct of a data mapping exercise
  • The conduct of primary research by a consultant to assess the situation of Child Labour in Trinidad and Tobago
  • Collaboration with Key Government/Non-Government Agencies
  • Development of a National Action Plan for Child Labour

The ILO continues to provide invaluable support to the MOL through the provision of technical and financial assistance for which the Ministry remains grateful.

The national community is being urged to join the Ministry of Labour in the fight against Child Labour by reporting any incidents of children below age sixteen (16) working.

Reports can be made to the Labour Inspectorate Unit at 299-0300 option 3, Childline at 131 or Children's Authority at 996.

Together we can protect our nation’s children by preventing and bringing an end to Child Labour in Trinidad and Tobago.

For further information, please contact:
Corporate Communications Unit
Ministry of Labour
International Waterfront Centre
Tower C, Level 6, 1A Wrightson Road
Port of Spain
Tel: 625-8478 exts. 1203/1509/1208/1211/1522
Fax: 623-1404
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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