News/ArticlesChild Rights ProtectionChild Labour in Ghana: A Ticking Time Bomb

Child Labour in Ghana: A Ticking Time Bomb

As the Executive Director of the Street Children Empowerment Foundation (SCEF), I am outraged by the staggering 900,000 children aged 5 to 17 years trapped in child labor in Ghana (GSS, 2024). This is a national crisis that demands immediate attention and action.

Key Facts:

About 21% of children aged 5 to 17 years are involved in child labor in Ghana (UNICEF, 2020). This is a stark violation of their rights and a hindrance to their optimal development.

– 14% of children aged 5 to 17 years are engaged in hazardous forms of labor (UNICEF, 2020). This exposes them to physical and emotional harm, perpetuating cycles of poverty and disadvantage.

– Child labor rates in Ghana vary between rural and urban areas, with more than four times the amount of children between ages 6 and 14 being employed in the north compared to the south (GSS, 2024).

– The agricultural sector in Ghana has the highest percentage of working children in the country, with 79.2% of working children between ages 5 and 14 employed in this sector (GSS, 2024).

– Children in the services sector, which includes domestic work, street work, and working at restaurants or bars, make up 15.8% of working children (GSS, 2024).

– The industry sector, which includes manufacturing, construction, quarrying, and small-scale mining, employs 5% of working children in Ghana (GSS, 2024).

Consequence :

– Children who work on the streets of Accra and major urban areas are exposed to exploitation, violence, and destitution. This is a ticking time bomb, as more children on the streets means more vulnerability to trafficking, abuse, and other forms of exploitation.



A Call to Action:

I urge civil society organizations, religious groups, community leaders, and the general public to join forces with SCEF to demand:

– Immediate enforcement of child labor laws and policies
– Access to quality education and vocational training
– Support for families to keep children in school
– Protection from exploitation and violence

We must hold the following government agencies, ministries, and offices accountable:

– Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection
– Ministry of Education
– Ministry of Labor and Employment
– Ghana Police Service
– Department of Social Welfare
– National Commission for Children (NCC)

Let Us Unite:

Together, we can create a Ghana where children are cherished, protected, and empowered to reach their full potential. The future of Ghana depends on our collective action.

Join the Movement:

Let us rise up and demand an end to child labor in Ghana! Let us ensure that every child has access to education, protection, and a bright future. We owe it to ourselves, our children, and our nation to act now!

Paul Semeh


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