Over last few years, the Philippines have been one of the countries in the world that was greatly affected by the worst forms of child labor. As an example, the children of the southern part of the Philippines, the island of Mindanao, have always been victims of child labor and different forms of abuse. Many of these child workers are being used in sugar cane fields and they are being robbed of their right to education and proper childhood. However, this unfortunate situation has seen a great leap of advancement this past year as the Philippines was recognized for exerting efforts into eliminating child labor in its society. The country's accomplishment, "Significant Advancement", in this year's child labor statistics collected by the annual Child Labor Report is an important progress since last year's rating being "Moderate Advancement." There are several factors that were carefully reviewed and considered before announcing the countries that made significant improvements over the course of a year. The ambassador of the Philippines, Jose Cuisia Jr., cited the government's efforts and programs as a contributing factor in the country's progress. Some of the laws that were passed by the Philippine government against child labor are: International Labor Organization's Convention 189 on Domestic workers, the ratification of Domestic Workers Act (Batas *Kasambahay), and the Expanded Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act. In addition to these laws implemented, there is other several regulations and campaigns that were passed namely, Child-Labor free Philippines and the Child-Labor free *barangays programs, in order to lessen the number of children seeking illegal and dangerous jobs around the country.
The Philippines is only one of the ten countries that was recognized by the United States for its achievement, other countries that were named were: Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Gibraltar, Indonesia, Peru, and Thailand.
The country of the Philippines, located in southeast Asia in the south of Taiwan, is still considered as a developing country but it is slowly recovering from years of abuse from corrupt politicians and several civil wars in the southern region of Mindanao between the military and Muslim groups. Thise issues that the government and its citizens struggled for years have caused a heavy influenced on the number of people falling into poverty. Many Filipino families were forced to seek job somewhere else, whether it may be locally or internationally and those who cannot afford to move to a better place had to cut out a great amount of their resource including their children's education and future. It is important to recognize achievements in order to continuously enforce and preserve the efforts being made to steadily decrease the percentage of children in the Philippines that are victims of child labor.
*Kasambahay= domestic helpers
*barangays= small towns
Trisha May Antonio
October 3, 2013