The Hard Truth about Child Slavery

Global Child Slavery Facts:


Number of children sold as slaves

So far this year

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TheWorldCounts, 08 December, 2014

Global Child Slavery Facts:

These child slavery facts may astound you, but in reality, what they show is encouraging although the results are too slow for comfort. There are still far too many children suffering from the worst forms of Child Labor.

  • There has been a 22% decrease in the number of child laborers around the world.
  • Since 2000, the number of child laborers has gone down from 248 million children to 168 million in 2013.
  • 85 million of these children are involved in hazardous work.
  • As of 2012, the highest number of child laborers, an estimated 59 million, can be found in the Sub Saharan Region.
  • The Agriculture Sector is still where the largest number of Child Laborers can be found. 98 million can be found in Agriculture, 54 million in Services and 12 million in Industry.
  • In 2012, the following countries were listed as the worst countries for child laborers:
  • Afghanistan, Pakistan, Myanmar and North Korea. The rest are all in Africa: DR Congo, Sudan, Somalia, Ethiopia, Burundi and Zimbabwe.

Read More: Child Labor in Sweatshops

  • Children as young as 5 years old are forced to operate tools and machinery, mines, factories and farms. They are exposed to harmful chemicals and toxins that puts their health at risk.
  • On average, they work 12 hours a day, 26 days a month. In extreme cases, they work more hours.
  • An estimated 12% of children in India, ages 5 to 14 are engaged in child labor – making carpets.
  • To end child labor would cost $760 billion over a 20 year period.
  • Most of these child laborers are sold to traffickers by people that they know… and even by their own parents.
  • Due to anti-sweatshop agreements, there are 28 million less children working in sweatshops now than 4 years ago.

When will all Children be FREE?

We’d like to think that we have become a sophisticated and informed society but we might want to reconsider that premise. Until child slavery exists, until we find a way to protect our future generation, we cannot claim to be a progressive species. Poverty, hunger, lack of education and opportunities – all of these factors are being blamed for the presence of child slavery in our society. However, if the whole world came together and seriously and cooperatively acted on the solutions, we believe that we can do something about it.

Find out how you can help Stop Child Labor and read the other pressing global issues at the World Counts: Stories.


  1. Canadian Labor Congress: Facts on Child Labor
  2. Goodweave: Child Labor Quick Facts
  3. ILO: Child Labour Facts and Figures

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Possible time left

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Hours of child labor

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