With the holiday season now in full swing, it is hard not to reflect upon this challenging past year. We at scoutbee are humbled and thankful for the hard work and remarkable efforts that procurement and supply chain teams worldwide have performed to support their communities.
Every day, we are motivated to do our part to help procurement leaders build stronger and more responsible supply networks. There is nothing more special than seeing the impacts of our AI software in helping teams make the best possible buying decisions. Of course, sourcing teams can make hugely positive impacts on society by collaborating with suppliers that produce sustainably and ethically. It’s also good business sense – as ethical purchasers are rightly rewarded with increased consumer spend, loyalty and investability.
Making supply chains as ethical and positive as possible includes the total removal of child labour from sectors like agriculture, fishing, manufacturing, mining and construction. This season, we’ve decided to join this battle by donating to Global March Against Child Labour. The charity works tirelessly through its on-the-ground advocacy for education for all children.
“Free, quality, public education for all children is the key to ending child labour; and ending child labour is a prerequisite to achieving education for all.”
– Nobel Peace Prize winner & Founder of Global March, Kailash Satyarthi
Why choose Global March against Child Labour?
The COVID-19 health pandemic and the resulting economic and labour market shock are having a huge impact on lives and livelihoods. Unfortunately, children are often the first to suffer. A recent report from UNICEF and ILO warns that the current pandemic may push millions more children into child labour.
- Before COVID-19, 152 million children were estimated to be in child labour globally. With the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, this number is likely to increase for the first time in 20 years.
- Alarmingly, 1.5 billion children’s education has been affected due to lockdowns across continents, the number of out of school children is also likely to rise, with girls adversely affected.
Global March Against Child Labour works across four incredibly worthy areas:
- Child labour in supply chains
- Child labour & trafficking
- Sustainable development goals
In 2020 alone, Global March has worked on many projects addressing child labour across the world. For example, in Uganda the team is collaborating with trade unions and child rights organizations in mapping the prevalence of child labour in coffee production and the impacts of COVID-19 on the exacerbation of child labour. Additionally, they send child labourers in coffee production back to school and empower communities to act directly to report and prevent child labour.
In Bangladesh, Global March has tackled child labour in the shrimp industry, and is working with government, civil society organizations and businesses to introduce better policies and due diligence. In Uganda, the charity has worked to map the prevalence of child work in coffee production in the Mt. Elgon region and impact of COVID-19 on its exacerbation.
Operating in Europe, Global March works closely with the government of the Netherlands as part of the International Responsible Business Conduct – including supermarket companies, spice merchants, raw metal dealers – guiding the businesses on how to carry out due diligence in their supply chain for identification and mitigation of child labour.
Global March advocates for greater transparency in supply chains and encourages companies to know exactly who is making their products, by raising awareness and understanding of the issue. It also harnesses the passion and power of consumers to generate effective pressure on businesses to ensure that no child labour factors in their supply chains.
COVID-19 health and economic crisis is indeed a big challenge for all stakeholders, however the focus on health and economy must not come at the expense of compromising on children’s education and their right to be protected, especially from exploitation and abuse.
At scoutbee, we believe that every child must be protected, educated, healthy, safe and free from labour. Join us to support long-term initiatives to end child labour. To learn more about the work of Global March Against Child Labour reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or check out their website.