No matter how bad boys have it, girls somehow have it a lot worse

ILO published a report on child labour. On page 21 you find this rhetorical same-same:

Hazardous work by sex
For the 5-17 years age group as a whole, boys account for nearly two-thirds of all children in hazardous work. This pattern, however, is again driven entirely by older children in the 15-17 years age group, in which boys account for 81 per cent of all children in hazardous work (and in child labour). Among younger children, the gender pattern is in fact the opposite: the number of girls in hazardous work is greater than that of boys, and by a considerable margin. For 5-11 yearolds, girls account for 58 per cent of all children in hazardous work, outnumbering boys by 2.8 million. For 12-14 year-olds, girls account for 56 per cent of all children in hazardous work and outnumber boys by 2.3 million. It is also worth recalling again that hazardous household chores, which are likely predominantly performed by girls, are not reflected in these figures.

In other words: 15% difference in total and 31% difference in one age group, yeah, yeah, OK, that’s not good, but want to see something REALLY bad? Here: 6% in that age group and here: 8% (EIGHT percent) in that age group!! That’s bad!
And if that’s not bad enough, there are some other unkown things that are pretty bad as well.


The distribution over age is as follows:

Children aged 15-17 years account for 55 per cent (47.5 million) of all children in hazardous work, while 12-14 year-olds account for 23 per cent (19.3 million) and 5-11 year-olds account for 22 per cent (18.5 million).

The definition of “hazardous” is rather vague:

(d) work which, by its nature or the circumstances in which it is carried out, is likely to harm the health, safety or morals of children.


(3) In determining the types of work referred to under Article 3(d) of the Convention, and in identifying where they exist, consideration should be given, inter alia, to:
(a) work which exposes children to physical, psychological or sexual abuse;
(b) work underground, under water, at dangerous heights or in confined spaces;
(c) work with dangerous machinery, equipment and tools, or which involves the manual handling or transport of heavy loads;
(d) work in an unhealthy environment which may, for example, expose children to hazardous substances, agents or processes, or to temperatures, noise levels, or vibrations damaging to their health;
(e) work under particularly difficult conditions such as work for long hours or during the night or work where the child is unreasonably confined to the premises of the employer.

My guess is that most girls fall under the 3a/3 kind of abuse.

I think it is futile to argue if prostitution is worse than having your leg chopped off. Both are bad. But when you open the gender-driven “girls have it still worse than boys” can of worms I for one would be interested in the details leading to that conclusion.

As we have seen in the CDC report it is quite easy to reach the verdict “men don’t suffer from x” when you define x as “something only happening to women”.

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