According to the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs, 1,490 children in the city are benefiting from the project, most of them child workers.
The project provides various services to the children and their parents, applying measures to prevent child sexual abuse and child labour. However, the number of children benefiting from the project remains modest.
Chung Hung Ban, deputy head of the department’s Office for Children Protection, Care and Gender Equality, explained that supporting child workers is difficult due to the uncooperative attitude of their employers as well as obstacles in their residential status.
A survey by the ILO of child workers in Vietnam showed 34 percent of the children work more than 42 hours per week, while 23 percent of them have no idea of how to deal with employers’ violations of labour laws.
Bui Van Dung from the ILO said excessive working time affects the physical and mental health of children, while limiting their chances to study and seek stable jobs. Dung added that many surveyed children wanted support for tuition, studying equipment, vocational training, job seeking, insurance and psychological consultations.
He recommended that in the last period of the project (from now to June, 2020), it should strengthen communications on criteria to define child labour, measures to recognise child workers and groups needing support, while raising awareness of labour regulations.