Last Updated: Tuesday, 02 September 2014, 13:52 GMT

2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Saint Lucia

Publisher United States Department of Labor
Author Bureau of International Labor Affairs
Publication Date 22 September 2005
Cite as United States Department of Labor, 2004 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Saint Lucia, 22 September 2005, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48c8ca70b.html [accessed 3 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.

Selected Child Labor Measures Adopted by Governments
Ratified Convention 138 
Ratified Convention 182 12/06/2000X
ILO-IPEC Member 
National Plan for Children 
National Child Labor Action Plan 
Sector Action Plan 

Incidence and Nature of Child Labor

Statistics on the number of working children under the age of 15 in Saint Lucia are unavailable. Some children work in rural areas, where they help harvest bananas on family farms. Children also work in urban food stalls and as street traders during non-school and festival days.[3448] According to the World Bank, children are becoming involved in commercial sexual exploitation in order to pay for basic needs, such as school fees and food.[3449]

Education in St. Lucia is compulsory between the ages of 5 and 15 years, but registration fees are required.[3450] In 2001, the gross primary enrollment rate was 111.3 percent.[3451] Gross and net enrollment ratios are based on the number of students formally registered in primary school and therefore do not necessarily reflect actual school attendance. Recent school attendance statistics are not available for Saint Lucia. Only about one-third of primary school children continue on to secondary school.[3452]

Child Labor Laws and Enforcement

The Employment of Women, Young Persons and Children Law sets 14 years as the minimum age for employment, 18 years in industrial settings,[3453] and prohibits night work for children under 16 years.[3454] The Education Act of 1999 sets the minimum age for employment at 16 years during the school year.[3455] Hazardous work is not defined in a single law, but is covered through a combination of legislation and regulations.[3456] The penalties for violation of child labor laws do not exceed USD 200, or 3 months imprisonment.[3457] The Constitution prohibits slavery, servitude, or forced labor, except for labor required by law, court order, military service, or public emergency.[3458] The Criminal Code bans the procurement of women and girls for prostitution, as well as the abduction of any female for the purpose of forced sexual relations.[3459] Procurement is punishable with imprisonment for 2 years, and abduction for the purpose of sexual relations is punishable with imprisonment for 14 years.[3460] Information on trafficking in persons is unavailable for Saint Lucia,[3461] and there are currently no laws that specifically address trafficking in persons.[3462]

The Department of Labor of the Ministry of Labor Relations, Public Service, and Cooperatives is responsible for implementing statutes on child labor. There were no reports of violations of child labor laws, or of trafficking in persons in 2003.[3463]

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

On June 21, 2004, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) trained government authorities in counter-trafficking issues during a one-day workshop. Officials received training in building awareness, networking regionally to combat trafficking, identifying trafficking victims and vulnerable groups, data gathering, and providing assistance to victims.[3464] The IOM returned to Saint Lucia to conduct an additional training for national authorities September 28-29, 2004.[3465]

In 2003, UNESCO funded the Youth Poverty Alleviation through Tourism and Heritage Project, which trained 25 people in tourism development and management with the goal of providing them with necessary skills for employment.[3466]

The Government of St. Lucia has given high priority to bettering educational opportunities for its children and supports programs such as subsidized meals in a number of schools and building new schools.[3467] The Caribbean Development Bank approved a loan to the Government of Saint Lucia in March 2003 for the rehabilitation of eleven primary schools and the provision of equipment to renovate the schools.[3468] On February 21, 2004, the Government of Saint Lucia opened a new school equipped with computer technology to help students develop skills for future employment.[3469]

In 2002, the Ministry of Education acquired funding from The World Bank to make secondary schools more accessible to a larger proportion of the population through the construction of additional schools, improvement of the curriculum and quality of teaching, provision of books and other education materials, funding of fellowships, and other programs targeting disadvantaged youth. This program, expected to end in 2008, will encourage greater parental involvement in the education of their children.[3470]

In 2004, The World Bank, in partnership with CARICOM and other international donor organizations, launched a regional HIV/AIDS prevention project active in Saint Lucia. This project contains a component focused on prevention of HIV transmission among young people. It will provide psychosocial and basic material support to orphans, increase access to HIV/AIDS prevention and services for out of school youth, integrate HIV/AIDS information into reproductive health programs, promote peer counseling for youth, parents, and teachers, and train teachers to address HIV/AIDS issues in the classroom. The first phase of this project is expected to end in 2007.[3471]


[3448] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2003: St. Lucia, Washington, D.C., February 25, 2004, Section 6d; available from http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2003/27918.htm. See also Government of St. Lucia, Child Labour, information submitted in response to U.S. government inquiry, Castries, October 12, 2004, 4.

[3449] The World Bank, Project Appraisal Document on a Proposed IDA Grant in the Amount of SDR 6.1 Million Equivalent to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) for The Pan Caribbean Partnership Against HIV/AIDS Project, The World Bank, Washington, D.C., March 4, 2004, 5; available from http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2004/04/23/000012009_20040423141603/Rendered/PDF/AB531.pdf. See also Felicia Robinson, Saint Lucia Report to the Regional Congress, Ministry of Health, Human Services and Family Affairs and Gender Relations; available from http://www.iin.oea.org/ST_LUCIA_ing.PDF.

[3450] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2003: St. Lucia.

[3451] The World Bank, World Development Indicators 2004, [CD-ROM], Washington, D.C., 2004. For an explanation of gross primary enrollment and/or attendance rates that are greater than 100 percent, please see the definitions of gross primary enrollment rate and gross primary attendance rate in the glossary of this report.

[3452] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2003: St. Lucia, Section 5.

[3453] The government recognizes that the age for the end of compulsory schooling does not correspond with the minimum age for employment, and has submitted a draft revision of the Labor Code to the legislature to address this by increasing the minimum age for employment to 16 years. See Ibid., Section 6d. The government has drafted legislation to increase the minimum age of employment to 16 years. See U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2003: St. Lucia, Section 6d.

[3454] Employment of Women, Young Persons and Children Act, 136.

[3455] Government of Saint Lucia, Education Act, Articles 27 and 47.

[3456] ILO, Review of Annual Reports under the Follow-up to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, GB.283/3/1, Geneva, March 2002, 25, para. 121.

[3457] U.S. Embassy-Bridgetown, unclassified telegram no. 1792, September 2001.

[3458] Constitution of Saint Lucia, 1978, (February 22, 1979), Section 4; available from http://www.georgetown.edu/pdba/Constitutions/Lucia/Luc78.html.

[3459] Criminal Code, as cited in The Protection Project Legal Library, [database online], Articles 103 and 225; available from http://209.190.246.239/protectionproject/statutesPDF/St.Lucia.pdf.

[3460] Ibid., Articles 225 and 106.

[3461] The Protection Project, Saint Lucia, Washington, DC, March, 2002; available from http://www.protectionproject.org/main1.htm.

[3462] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2003: St. Lucia, Section 6f.

[3463] Ibid., Sections 6d, 6f.

[3464] Jean Philippe Chauzy, Guyana – Regional Counter-Trafficking Training, press release, International Organization for Migration, June 15, 2004; available from http://www.iom.int/en/archive/pbn150604.shtml.

[3465] Niurka Pineiro, Caribbean – Counter Trafficking Training Seminars, press release, International Organization for Migration, September 24, 2004; available from http://www.iom.int/en/news/pbn240904.shtml.

[3466] Claudia Monlouis, Youth Poverty Alleviation Programmes for Dennery, press release, Government of Saint Lucia, May 19, 2003; available from http://www.stlucia.gov.lc/pr2003/youth_poverty_alleviation_programmes_for_dennery.htm.

[3467] U.S. Department of State, Country Reports – 2003: St. Lucia, Section 5. See also U.S. Embassy-Bridgetown, unclassified telegram no. 1792.

[3468] Caribbean Development Bank, Economic Reconstruction Programme – Rehabilitation of Primary Schools and Health Centres in St. Lucia, press release, Caribbean Development Bank, March 6, 2003; available from www.caribank.org.

[3469] Virnet St. Omer-Fontenelle, Ciceron Secondary School: An Education Model, press release, Government of Saint Lucia, February 25, 2004; available from http://www.stlucia.gov.lc/pr2004/february/ciceron_secondary_school_an_education_model.htm.

[3470] The World Bank, Project Appraisal Document for Proposed Loans and Credit in the Amount of US$5.0 Million to St. Kitts and Nevis and $6.0 Million and SDR 4.8 Million to St. Lucia, D.C., Washington, May 15, 2002; available from http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSContentServer/WDSP/IB/2003/11/11/000012009_20031111091449/Rendered/PDF/241590EBoard.pdf.

[3471] The World Bank, Project Appraisal Document on a Proposed IDA Grant in the Amount of SDR 6.1 Million Equivalent to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) for The Pan Caribbean Partnership Against HIV/AIDS Project. See also The World Bank, Project Appraisal Document on a Proposed Loan in the Amount of US$3.2 Million and Proposed Credit in the Amount of SDR1.15 Million and Proposed Grant in the Amount of SDR1.15 Million to Saint Lucia, The World Bank, Washington, D.C., June 1, 2004; available from http://www-wds.worldbank.org/servlet/WDSP/IB/2004/06/17/000012009_20040617132504/Rendered/PDF/291290SL.pdf.

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