OTTAWA – Vice President of the NDP Youth Caucus, Isabelle Morin (Notre-Dame-de-Grâce-Lachine), made a speech in the House of Commons Wednesday, drawing attention to World Day Against Child Labour.
She told the story of Iqbal Masih, a Pakistani child labourer who was sold as a slave at the age of four, and who spent six years of his life chained to a loom.
“Iqbal was freed from the atrocious conditions of forced labour. He became famous around the world for speaking out against child labour, but sadly in 1995, while still a child, Iqbal Masih was murdered for having defended children’s rights” she recounted.
In 2010, 215 million children, or 1 child in 7 around the world, were still working. Of all these children, more than half were exposed to the worst kind of child labour. They work as slaves in dangerous environments or for illicit activities. Child labour robs children of their childhood, their potential, their dignity and their fundamental rights.
“I dedicate my speech time today to the memory of Iqbal Masih and to all young Canadians and organizations that fight each day against child labour” Morin added.