2002 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - West Bank and Gaza Strip
|Publisher||United States Department of Labor|
|Author||Bureau of International Labor Affairs|
|Publication Date||18 April 2003|
|Cite as||United States Department of Labor, 2002 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - West Bank and Gaza Strip, 18 April 2003, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48d748d43f.html [accessed 8 December 2013]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
There is limited information regarding the extent and nature of child labor and the quality and provision of education in non-independent countries and territories eligible for GSP, AGOA and CBTPA benefits. These areas generally are not eligible to become members of the ILO, and ILO Convention 138 and ILO Convention 182 do not apply to any of them.3937
The West Bank and Gaza Strip is an associated member of ILO-IPEC. In 2002, the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics estimated that less than 1 percent of children ages 10 to 14 are working in the Palestinian territories.3997 Children work in agriculture, in family shops and as street vendors. Some children also work in small manufacturing enterprises, such as shoe and textile factories.3998 There are also reports that children and adolescents have been enrolled in military-style camps and have participated in Palestinian armed groups.3999
Education is compulsory through grade nine.4000 The gross enrollment rate in basic education was 96.8 percent in 1999-20004001 and the net enrollment rate in 1998-1999 was 90.9 percent.4002 Although gross and net enrollment rates are high, many girls marry early and do not complete the mandatory level of schooling, and in rural areas and refugee camps, boys often drop out of school early to help support their families.4003 Closures limited children's and teachers' access to schooling in 2001 and student learning was reported to be negatively affected by the violent security situation.4004 The violence resulted in the cancellation of classes in areas under curfew,4005 delays in school construction and sharp declines in teaching time due to problems with teacher attendance.4006 There are some reports that poverty and the isolation of school closures have made some families reluctant to keep girls in school.
The minimum age for work is 15 years, but there are restrictions on the employment of children between the ages of 15 and 18, including prohibitions against night work, work under conditions of hard labor and/or jobs that require them to travel outside their domicile.4007 The Palestinian Authority is responsible for enforcing the area's labor laws; however, with only 40 labor inspectors for an estimated 65,000 enterprises, the Authority has limited capacity to enforce labor laws.4008
The Palestinian Authority has indicated an interest in collaborating with ILO-IPEC to improve child labor law enforcement, and to conduct a child labor survey to determine the extent and nature of child labor in the West Bank and Gaza Strip with technical assistance from ILO-IPEC's SIMPOC. UNICEF is working on a campaign to provide 35,000 students in the West Bank with materials in case of school closures and to train educators to teach via television, if necessary.4009 UNICEF also collaborated with the Palestinian Ministries of Youth and Education to organize summer camps for an estimated 33,000 children in 2002.4010
3937 ILO official, electronic communication to USDOL official, January 31, 2002. Also Julie Misner, USDOL Office of International Organizations, electronic communication to USDOL official, September 3, 2002. Most of the areas covered in this summary report are considered by the ILO to be non-metropolitan territories and therefore, are ineligible to become members of the ILO. An ILO member can submit a declaration to the ILO requesting that these conventions apply to their non-metropolitan territories. See ILO, Constitution, Chapter 1, Article 1 and Chapter III, Article 35 [cited November 12, 2002]; available from http://www.ilo.org/public/english/about/iloconst.htm.
3997 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Main Findings According to the Relaxed Definition of Unemployment, [cited August 27, 2002]; available from http://www.pcbs.org/english/press_25.htm.
3998 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2001: Israel and the Occupied Territories, Washington, D.C., March 4, 2002, 2131-33, Section 6d [cited December 19, 2002]; available from http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2001/nea/8262.htm.
3999 Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers, ""West Bank and Gaza Strip"," in Global Report 2001, [cited September 20, 2002]; available from http://library.amnesty.it/cs.childsoldiers.nsf/.
4000 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2001: Israel and the Occupied Territories, 2129-31, Section 5.
4001 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Gross Enrollment Rate in the Basic State by Region for Scholastic Years 1995/1996-1999/2000, 2000, [cited September 20, 2002]; available from http://www.pcbs.org/english/child/tables/ educ_01htm.
4002 Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, Net Enrollment by Grade 1994/1995-1998/1999, 1999, [cited September 20, 2002]; available from http://www.pcbs.org/english/educatio/educ5.htm.
4003 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2001: Israel and the Occupied Territories, 2129-31, Section 5.
4006 This report was based on a study conducted between April and June 2001. The study is based on information through focus groups in four areas of the Palestinian Territories: Tulkaram, Hebron, South Hebron and Khan Younis. Save the Children UK and Save the Children Sweden, Education Under Occupation: Palestinian Children Talk About Life and School, March 2002, 14.
4007 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2001: Israel and the Occupied Territories, 2131-33, Section 6d.
4009 UNWire, Middle East: UNICEF Focuses on Education for Palestinian Children, United Nations Foundation, [online] May 28, 2002 [cited August 27, 2002]; available from http://www.unfoundation.org/unwire/util/ display_stories.asp?objid=26658.
4010 UNWire, Palestinians: UNICEF Launches Summer Camps for Children, United Nations Foundation, [online] July 8, 2002 [cited August 27, 2002]; available from http://www.unfoundation.org/unwire/util/ display_stories.asp?objid=27461.