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2002 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Georgia

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 - Georgia, 18 April 2003, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48d74891c.html [accessed 2 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis 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.

Government Policies and Programs to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor

Georgia is an associated country of ILO-IPEC.1493 With technical assistance from ILO-IPEC's SIMPOC, the Government of Georgia has conducted a child labor survey and is in the final stages of releasing national estimates on child labor.1494 The UNDP is also working to strengthen the capacity of the State Department of Statistics, in order to conduct a national child labor survey.1495 In February 2000, the President promulgated a general strategy to combat trafficking.1496

With its limited budget, the Ministry of Education is working to improve the country's existing educational institutions, support teacher training, and establish new curricula and education standards.1497 The World Bank recently provided Georgia with a loan for approximately USD 30 million to work toward several of these objectives in the education sector.1498 UNICEF is assisting various government ministries to address children's rights issues, including increasing access to quality pre-primary and basic education.1499 Save the Children-US is also collaborating with UNICEF and local NGOs to promote children's rights, and specifically to assist street children who do not have access to education.1500

Incidence and Nature of Child Labor

In 1999, UNICEF estimated that 30 percent of children ages 5 to 14 years in Georgia were working.1501 There is limited information on the specific sectors in which children work. However, there are reports of children as young as 9 years old working on the streets of Tbilisi, in markets and sometimes at night, carrying or loading wares.1502 Children as young as 5 years of age work as beggars.1503 Other reports indicate that children are trafficked from Georgia to Turkey or Greece for the purposes of prostitution and domestic servitude.1504 Incidents of the commercial sexual exploitation of children, particularly for prostitution and pornography, are reported to be increasing, especially among girls.1505

Education in Georgia is free of charge and compulsory1506 from the age of 6 or 7 until 16 years.1507 In 1998, the gross primary enrollment rate was 95.3 percent.1508 In 2000, the net attendance rate for children ages 6 to 15 in Georgia was 96 percent.1509 Although the Constitution mandates that primary education is free,1510 related expenses such as books prevent some children from attending.1511

Child Labor Laws and Enforcement

The law sets the minimum age for employment at 16 years. However, children who are 15 years of age may work in jobs that are not dangerous to their health or development, in some jobs in the performing arts, or with special permission from the local trade union.1512 In general, children under 18 years of age may not be hired for unhealthy or underground work, and children between the ages of 16 and 18 years have reduced working hours.1513

The Criminal Code prohibits keeping brothels, procuring women for prostitution, lewd conduct involving minors, and sexual relations with a person under 16.1514 Although there are no laws that specifically address trafficking, related offenses can be prosecuted under the Criminal Code.1515 These offenses are punishable by a prison sentence of up to three years.1516 There is no available information on the enforcement of minimum age laws. There was a recent conviction in a Georgian case involving trafficking in minors.1517

The Government of Georgia ratified ILO Convention 138 on September 23, 1996, and ratified ILO Convention 182 on July 24, 2002.1518


1493 ILO-IPEC, All About IPEC: Programme Countries, [online] [cited November 15, 2002]; available from http://www.ilo.org/public/english/standards/ipec/about/countries/t_country.htm.

1494 ILO-IPEC official, electronic communication to USDOL official, August 28, 2002.

1495 United Nations Development Programme, Technical Assistance to Georgia in the field of Labor Statistics, project summary, 1999, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.undp.org.ge/programme/ongoing/laborchild.pdf.

1496 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report – 2002: Georgia, Washington, D.C., June 5, 2002, 51 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.state.gov/g/tip/rls/tiprpt/2002/10679.htm#georgia.

1497 UNESCO, Education for All 2000 Assessment: Country Reports – Georgia, prepared by Ministry of Education, pursuant to UN General Assembly Resolution 52/84, 1999, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www2.unesco.org/wef/countryreports/georgia/contents.html.

1498 World Bank, Education System Realignment and Strengthening Credit Project, 2001 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.worldbank.org/sprojects/Project.asp?pid=P055173.

1499 UNICEF, Country Highlights: Georgia, 2002 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.unicef.org/ programme/countryprog/cee_cis/georgia/situation.htm.

1500 Assistance Georgia, Child Rights Promotion and Advocacy/Children in Crisis in Georgia, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.assistancegeorgia.org.ge.

1501 Children who are working in some capacity include children who have performed any paid or unpaid work for someone who is not a member of the household, who have performed more than four hours of housekeeping chores in the household, or who have performed other family work. Government of Georgia, Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2 (MICS2): Georgia, UNICEF, 1999, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.ucw-project.org/resources/ index.html. See also State Department of Statistics – National Center for Disease Control, Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS) 1999: Republic of Georgia, UNICEF, Tbilisi, 2000, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.childinfo.org/MICS2/Gj99306k.htm.

1502 According to government estimates, there are at least 2,000 street children in the capital city, Tbilisi. Georgia NGO Convention on the Rights of the Child Coordinative Council, Implementation of the Convention on Children's Rights in Georgia: A Report of Non-Governmental Organizations, Tbilisi, 1999, 26.

1503 Ibid.

1504 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report: Georgia. Trafficking arrangements through Georgia and into Turkey may be facilitated by the visa-free arrangement between the two countries. Dr. Louise I. Shelley, "Statement at Hearing on Sex Trade: Trafficking of Women and Children in Europe and the United States" (paper presented at the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission), June 28, 1999). See also International Organization for Migration, "Irregular Migration and Trafficking in Migrants – the Case of Georgia," Trafficking in Migrants no. 22 (Autumn 2000). According to the Human Rights Watch 2002 report, trafficking networks that employ children for forced prostitution are suspected to run out of employment and travel agencies. See Human Rights Watch, Human Rights Watch World Report 2002: Georgia, 2002 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://hrw.org/wr2k2/europe9.html.

1505 UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child: Georgia, Geneva, June 28, 2000, para 66, [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.unhchr.ch.

1506 Constitution of Georgia, Article 35, [cited November 5, 2002]; available from http://www.parliament.ge/ LEGAL_ACTS/CONSTITUTION/consen.html.

1507 UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial Reports of States Parties due in 1996, Addendum: Georgia, CRC/ C/41/Add.4, prepared by Government of Georgia, pursuant to Article 44 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, May 26, 1997.

1508 The net primary enrollment rate is unavailable for Georgia. World Bank, World Development Indicators 2002 [CDROM], Washington, D.C., 2002.

1509 Government of Georgia, MICS2: Georgia.

1510 Constitution of Georgia, Article 35.

1511 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2001: Georgia, Washington, D.C., March 4, 2002, 1462-65, Section 5 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2001/eur/ 8256.htm.

1512 UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial Reports of States Parties, Addendum: Georgia, paras. 13, 219 and 20.

1513 Ibid., para 220.

1514 Republic of Georgia Criminal Code, Article 119 [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://www.protectionproject.org.

1515 Ibid., Articles 118, 33, 230. See also UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial Reports of States Parties,
Addendum: Georgia, paras. 13, 219 and 20.1516 U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2001: Georgia, 1462-65, Section 5.

1517 U.S. Department of State, Trafficking in Persons Report: Georgia, 51.

1518 ILO, Ratifications by Country, in ILOLEX, [database online] [cited September 5, 2002]; available from http://ilolex.ilo.ch:1567/english/newratframeE.htm.

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