Child Labour Is No Accident: The Experience of BC’s Working Children

Just in case you missed it, in May 2013 we published a new report, Child Labour Is No Accident: The Experience of BC’s Working Children.

This report brings together original research through interviews and focus groups, with existing studies to examine the consequences of child labour laws in BC. The study focused on three areas of potential impact: health and safety, wages and working conditions, and education. It also contrasts BC’s law with employment standards in other jurisdictions.

Some key findings from this study include:

  • Forty-three per cent of youth study participants reported sustaining workplace injuries.
  • Lack of pay for training is a common experience among working children and youth.
  • Sixty per cent of young people who participated in this study started work at age 14 or under, but only 24 per cent reported a parent had given written permission for them to start work, as required by the current legislation.
  • Sixteen per cent of participants reported having dropped out of school due to their work schedule and/or financial need and forty-six per cent reported being too tired and/or not having enough time to complete their homework or participate appropriately at school as a result of working too much.
  • About half of study participants reported they did not receive adequate (or in some cases any) training at their jobs.

You will find a copy of the report and media release on our website here. On the eve of publishing the report, we received important new data from WorkSafe BC. As it was too late to integrate this new data into the report, we have included it as an addendum.