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Jamaica gets help with collecting child labour data

BY TANESHA MUNDLE Observer staff reporter mundlet@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, January 31, 2014    

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JAMAICA is to receive assistance from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to boost its capacity to collect data on child labour for the country's second national survey.

The assistance will come through the Global Research on Child Labour Measurement and Policy Development Programme, which will also benefit nine other countries including Armenia, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Malawi, Morocco, Peru and Tanzania.

The US$7-million, four-year project, which started last November, has five components that cover data collection and measurement; analysis and reporting; development of policy appraisals; preparation and publishing of public-use data files; and capacity building for the statistical office.

Yesterday, representatives from ILO began a two-day meeting with stakeholders from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security at the ministry's downtown Kingston offices to discuss the implementation of the programme in Jamaica.

Principal investigator and project co-ordinator at ILO, Fredrico Blanco, said that the local survey will benefit significantly from the new approach.

Project Director Bijoy Raychaudhuri, meanwhile, said there should be focus on how the data can become part of the national data system.

"It is also important when we talk about this project, to envisage in the future not only to do this survey every 10 years, but to see how it is possible to stream child labour statistics into the national... system," he said.

Director of the Child Labour Unit in the ministry, Marva Ximminies, said the project will complement the ministry's work in capacity building.

"One of the most important activities that we are engaged in is to continuously develop the knowledge base on child labour and that is why this second survey is so absolutely important," she said. "We must admit that the information is not necessarily current but child labour is exhibiting itself in various other forms that were not captured in the survey in 2002."

The implementation of the local programme will be undertaken by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica.

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