Talk:Child labour

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Non-exploitative labour in Indigenous communities[edit]

I posted as a reply to almasmit already, but figure I'll put here too. There is information that non-exploitative labour can benefit child development, specifically in Indigenous communities. I also have a couple cites on the ILO's understanding of such practices. May I have access to add such notes to the page? Rmroush (talk) 21:29, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

The Map of child labor is incorrect according to the references informed[edit]

The colors of the map do not represent the data informed by UNICEF on the address, used as reference.

For instance, according to Unicef´s statistics, Brazil has 3% of child labor rate, but it´s marked on the map as 10 - 20% of children working. On the other hand, Peru has 34% &india has 30% of children working according to Unicef´s data, but in the map it appears as having less than 10%. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:45, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

general bias in these articles[edit]

Why is it that the pro-capitalist position seems to get the last word in many articles about controversial topics such as child labor (or any of the myriad, unscrupulous practices employed by capitalists around the world)? This article seems to dance around these topics - especially when it comes to child labor in the U.S. It was not the reformer or the politician that ended the grim necessity for child labor; it was capitalism. Actually, no, it was education laws finally getting some federal teeth during the New Deal Era. I will be recommending to others that they find more scholarly and balanced sources; other than these wikipedia articles, which seem to be the purview of the Laissez-Faire set, only... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:21, 17 July 2013 (UTC)

Labor in Indigenous Cultures[edit]

As a student in an Upper Division UCSC Seminar class focused on indigenous learning, we have reviewed many examples of work that may be viewed as labor by the western world, but is in fact beneficial to the development of some indigenous children. Would there be a possibility of me/my classmates including some content dealing with this issue? Almasmit (talk) 20:59, 15 November 2012 (UTC)

I would like to add some information along these lines. Is it possible for me to have access? Rmroush (talk) 21:16, 26 May 2014 (UTC)


"Child Labor : Threatening children to work to earn a living.

In India, if a boy/girl wants to read and write ,which basically implies that if he/she wishes to go to a school or college,he/she cant afford because they don't even have money for their food.So how is it going to be possible for them to go to the school and obviously the great amount of money needed for registration is not affordable for them.So the only way to do this is "EARN AND LEARN".This means in the day time they can have a part-time job which is sufficient enough for their studies."


What is the typical lifespan of a child that starts to work at a very young age!? --Xalosj (talk) 18:45, 14 March 2009 (UTC) ~That's like asking the average lifespan of blonde people. (talk) 21:44, 8 April 2009 (UTC)

child labor is very bad

I am not sure but I am almost certain that it reduces the lifespan. It is NOT like asking the average lifespan of blonde people because the environment that a laboring child is in can cause much harm and can often reduce the lifespan, therefore reducing the average lifespan of a child that starts to work at a very young age. -epic93 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:15, 8 June 2009 (UTC)

How can you assert that child labor reduces life span if you don't have any sources or statistics to back that up? And sure it "can" cause much harm or reduce lifespan like driving with your kid in your car "can" reduce lifespan. The word "can" means nothing. Also if we were to find stats about the lifespan of kids working vs not working, the stats would have to take into consideration family income levels because families that have kids working are more likely to be poor and therefore more likely to have poor health care, etc. (talk) 15:57, 11 September 2010 (UTC)

The post was originally asking for sources. I second that they be provided.

Friedman on child labour[edit]

"According to Milton Friedman, before the Industrial Revolution virtually all children worked in agriculture. During the Industrial Revolution many of these children moved from farm work to factory work. Over time, as real wages rose, parents became able to afford to send their children to school instead of work and as a result child labour declined, both before and after legislation.[26]"

However, I can't seem to find any essay by Friedman discussing this issue. The source is utterly unhelpful, backing up the second sentence rather than the first. Is there an actual source for this? ( (talk) 18:48, 22 October 2009 (UTC))

Show business[edit]

Involving children in show business, is it considered child labour? Are there any restrictions? Alone Coder (talk) 22:28, 24 September 2009 (UTC) mESSINA IS AWESOME

child labour[edit]

is children working as a supplier in mess is not an offence???????? plz give an answer....... and give an idea to eradicate this.... bcoz in my locality, lot of children were working as mess supplier....NOTE: chairmanship was an ex-politician(ex-mla)..... plz mail me... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:48, 5 October 2009 (UTC)

Hai friend I m also agree with u r feelings........... because I too see lot of children still work like a slave!! &I m the one who is seeing this thing & i can't stop my self,so called the police they came there & arrested that man, that child to hostel where such childrens were live. But there also that child don't want to live there.Why??????????????????????????? Can u tell me [my ID is]so plz mail me what is the reason???????????? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:19, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

The historical section begins at the Industrial Revolution. This excludes the important context of the continuing practice of child labor from agricultural days. Child labor, was, in fact, a social standard for many thousands of years. This is revealed in all kinds of sources... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:41, 18 October 2009 (UTC) so plz try to stop this offence —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:32, 8 December 2010 (UTC) Child labour refers to the employment of children at regular and sustained labour. This practice is considered exploitative by many international organizations and is illegal in many countries. Child labour was employed to varying extents through most of history, but entered public dispute with the advent of universal schooling, with changes in working conditions during the industrial revolution, and with the emergence of the concepts of workers' and children's rights.

In many developed countries, it is considered inappropriate or exploitative if a child below a certain age works (excluding household chores, in a family shop, or school-related work).[2] An employer is usually not permitted to hire a child below a certain minimum age. This minimum age depends on the country and the type of work involved. States ratifying the Minimum Age Convention adopted by the International Labor Organization in 1973, have adopted minimum ages varying from 14 to 16. Child labor laws in the United States set the minimum age to work in an establishment without restrictions and for those who are younger than 16, need a written statement by a legal guardian acknowledging understanding of the duties and hours of employment and granting permission to work is required.[1] [3] except for the agricultural industry where children as young as 12 years of age can work in the fields for an unlimited number of non-school hours.In certain circumstances however news carriers may be employed at age 11 and juvenile performers in the entertainment area.[2] See Children's Act for Responsible Employment (CARE Act)


During the Industrial Revolution, children as young as four were employed in production factories with dangerous, and often fatal, working conditions.[5] Based on this understanding of the use of children as labourers, it is now considered by wealthy countries to be a human rights violation, and is outlawed, while some poorer countries may allow or tolerate child labour. Child labour can also be defined as the full-time employment of children who are under a minimum legal age.

The Victorian era became notorious for employing young children in factories and mines and as chimney sweeps.[6] Child labour played an important role in the Industrial Revolution from its outset, often brought about by economic hardship, Charles Dickens for example worked at the age of 12 in a blacking factory, with his family in debtor's prison. The children of the poor were expected to help towards the family budget, often working long hours in dangerous jobs for low pay,[7] earning 10-20% of an adult male's wage. In England and Scotland in 1788, two-thirds of the workers in 143 water-powered cotton mills were described as children.[8] In 19th-century Great Britain, one-third of poor families were without a breadwinner, as a result of death or abandonment, obliging many children to work from a young age. Two girls protesting child labour (by calling it child slavery) in the 1909 New York City Labor Day parade.

In coal mines, children would crawl through tunnels too narrow and low for adults.[9]These mines caused injury in their physical growth in the children. This was also the outcome of the hazardous factories and mills that they were forced to work in. They had to work in any situation or condition such as sickness which caused them to rather want to go to hell than go back to their assigned working places. Nunez, Sandra (1997). And Justice for All. Connecticut: Millbrook press. 

  1. ^ "Child Labor Act". Retrieved 5 April 2014. 
  2. ^ "Child Labor Act". Retrieved 12 January 2014. 

Pre-industrial history[edit]

Children also worked as errand boys, crossing sweepers, shoe blacks, or selling matches, flowers and other cheap goods.[7] Some children undertook work as apprentices to respectable trades, such as building or as domestic servants (there were over 120,000 domestic servants in London in the mid-18th century). Working hours were long: builders worked 64 hours a week in summer and 52 in winter, while domestic servants worked 80 hour weeks.

Children as young as three were put to work. A high number of children also worked as prostitutes.[10] Many children (and adults) worked 16 hour days. As early as 1802 and 1819 Factory Acts were passed to regulate the working hours of workhouse children in factories and cotton mills to 12 hours per day. These acts were largely ineffective and after radical agitation, by for example the "Short Time Committees" in 1831, a Royal Commission recommended in 1833 that children aged 11–18 should work a maximum of 12 hours per day, children aged 9–11 a maximum of eight hours, and children under the age of nine were no longer permitted to work. This act however only applied to the textile industry, and further agitation led to another act in 1847 limiting both adults and children to 10 hour working days.

An estimated 1.7 million children under the age of fifteen were employed in American industry by 1900.[11] In 1910, over 2 million children in the same age group were employed in the United States.[12]

Present day

Today child labor is the illegal employment of children. The laws now state that children may not work more than eight hours a day when school is not in session and no more than three hours when school is in session. These are some of the conditions set to deal with the complexity of the working lives of children. In farms, there used to be dangerous hazards and accidents from the hazardous machines. So today, they can only help pick crops or food to work at a farm. Greene, Laura (1992). Child Labor: Then and Now. New York: Franklin Watis. 

Child labour is still common in some parts of the world, it can be factory work, mining,[13] prostitution, quarrying, agriculture, helping in the parents' business, having one's own small business (for example selling food), or doing odd jobs. Some children work as guides for tourists, sometimes combined with bringing in business for shops and restaurants (where they may also work as waiters). Other children are forced to do tedious and repetitive jobs such as: assembling boxes, polishing shoes, stocking a store's products, or cleaning. However, rather than in factories and sweatshops, most child labour occurs in the informal sector, "selling many things on the streets, at work in agriculture or hidden away in houses—far from the reach of official labour inspectors and from media scrutiny." And all the work that they did was done in all types of weather; and was also done for minimal pay. As long as there is family poverty there will be child labour.[14]

According to UNICEF, there are an estimated 250 million children aged 5 to 14 in child labour worldwide, excluding child domestic labour.[15] The United Nations and the International Labor Organization consider child labour exploitative,[16][17] with the UN stipulating, in article 32 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child that:

   ...States Parties recognize the right of the child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be hazardous or to interfere with the child's education, or to be harmful to the child's health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development. Although globally there is an estimated 250 million children working.[17]

In the 1990s every country in the world except for Somalia and the United States became a signatory to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, or CRC. Somalia eventually signed the convention in 2002; the delay of the signing was believed to been due to Somalia not having a government.[18] A boy repairing a tire in Gambia

In a recent paper, Basu and Van (1998)[19] argue that the primary cause of child labour is parental poverty. That being so, they caution against the use of a legislative ban against child labour, and argue that should be used only when there is reason to believe that a ban on child labour will cause adult wages to rise and so compensate adequately the households of the poor children. Child labour is still widely used today in many countries, including India and Bangladesh. CACL estimated that there are between 70 and 80 million child labourers in India.[20]

Child labour accounts for 22% of the workforce in Asia, 32% in Africa, 17% in Latin America, 1% in US, Canada, Europe and other wealthy nations.[21] The proportion of child labourers varies a lot among countries and even regions inside those countries.

Defence of child labour

Concerns have often been raised over the buying public's moral complicity in purchasing products assembled or otherwise manufactured in developing countries with child labour. However, others have raised concerns that boycotting products manufactured through child labour may force these children to turn to more dangerous or strenuous professions, such as prostitution or agriculture. For example, a UNICEF study found that after the Child Labor Deterrence Act was introduced in the US, an estimated 50,000 children were dismissed from their garment industry jobs in Bangladesh, leaving many to resort to jobs such as "stone-crushing, street hustling, and prostitution", jobs that are "more hazardous and exploitative than garment production". The study suggests that boycotts are "blunt instruments with long-term consequences, that can actually harm rather than help the children involved."[14]

According to Milton Friedman, before the Industrial Revolution virtually all children worked in agriculture. During the Industrial Revolution many of these children moved from farm work to factory work. Over time, as real wages rose, parents became able to afford to send their children to school instead of work and as a result child labour declined, both before and after legislation.[36] Austrian school economist Murray Rothbard said that British and American children of the pre- and post-Industrial Revolution lived and suffered in infinitely worse conditions where jobs were not available for them and went "voluntarily and gladly" to work in factories.[37]

British historian and socialist E. P. Thompson in The Making of the English Working Class draws a qualitative distinction between child domestic work and participation in the wider (waged) labour market.[5] Further, the usefulness of the experience of the industrial revolution in making predictions about current trends has been disputed. Social historian Hugh Cunningham, author of Children and Childhood in Western Society Since 1500, notes that:

   "Fifty years ago it might have been assumed that, just as child labour had declined in the developed world in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, so it would also, in a trickle-down fashion, in the rest of the world. Its failure to do that, and its re-emergence in the developed world, raise questions about its role in any economy, whether national or global."[36]

According to Thomas DeGregori, an economics professor at the University of Houston, in an article published by the Cato Institute, a libertarian think-tank operating in Washington D.C., "it is clear that technological and economic change are vital ingredients in getting children out of the workplace and into schools. Then they can grow to become productive adults and live longer, healthier lives. However, in poor countries like Bangladesh, working children are essential for survival in many families, as they were in our own heritage until the late 19th century. So, while the struggle to end child labour is necessary, getting there often requires taking different routes—and, sadly, there are many political obstacles.[38]

The International Labour Organization’s International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour (IPEC), founded in 1992, aims to eliminate child labour. It operates in 88 countries and is the largest program of its kind in the world.[39] IPEC works with international and government agencies, NGOs, the media, and children and their families to end child labour and provide children with

by.... ratnesh kanungo of rps — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:38, 18 July 2011 (UTC)

Indian poverty and child abuse[edit]

“Child labour is still widely used today in many countries, including India and Bangladesh. CACL estimated that there are between 70 and 80 million child labourers in India.”

Involved Countries[edit]

is it possible to relate to other countries besides India today such as countries in Asia for example? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:50, 12 November 2009 (UTC)

Can Indian government do anything about it? too poor. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Khalidshou (talkcontribs) 16:29, 19 October 2009 (UTC)

I think it should be spread upon in order to get a better view of the way child labor globally effects children instead of focusing primarily on one country. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Akatsuki21 (talkcontribs) 15:00, 17 November 2009 (UTC)

What about the childslavery in Europe. Dutch BJZ company for instance rent out children from the age of 6 to work all over Europe in factories, farms or other companies. The French government was the only one to ever protest to this, because children died on the job. and the French could not insure children for work related injuries. The work these children do takes up to 18 hours a day and there are no laws in place to make the owners buy safety gear for them. The children get no education and there is no law on this as they are exported to another country within the EU and therefore are exempt from the national law on education. Even if they were to get any education during the 6 hours a day they have left, it would not amount to them learning anything. If education is given the level of education would not be up to the standard of personal achivement. It would be to make them work better in their work environment only. Several thousand kids a year by one company only is just too much to ignore. And there are many such companies operating in Holland. Something wiki should definitly highlight. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:04, 29 October 2011 (UTC)

See also[edit]

shouldnt UNICEF be included with these links?

Truth or just totally misplaced sentence[edit]

Under the "Historical"-section,the first few sentences of the fifth paragraph mentions the following: "A high number of children also worked as prostitutes.[10] Children as young as three were put to work." Seriously, at the age of three? Does not make any sense at all.
AFAIK this was a part of a thorough edit by Graham87 half a year ago, and I chose not to remove it since at least a part of the whole paragraph have listed sources.If someone agrees with me, I would be delighted if they'd remove it. --Samohtas (talk) 18:13, 1 May 2010 (UTC)

Newspaper routes[edit]

Do you know if there are still children in America who have newspaper delivery routes? Didn't they have to start at 4 or 5 a.m.? I know there were all while I was growing up & not too long ago there were still many, but I don't think there are many now, or I just don't hear of any. Stars4change (talk) 16:33, 21 May 2010 (UTC)

I have looked in recent years and have not seen any anywhere. I think it's because adults in cars are much more efficient -- ie cheaper per subscriber-- Rjensen (talk) 19:25, 24 February 2012 (UTC)


Edit request from, 25 July 2011[edit]

Please remove this sentence "And all the work that they did was done in all types of weather; and was also done for minimal pay. As long as there is family poverty there will be child labor", which occurs at the end of the first paragraph of the section titled "Present Day" Although it has a source I find the language overly dramatic and unnecessary. (talk) 22:53, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done. Feezo (send a signal | watch the sky) 06:44, 28 July 2011 (UTC)

Incorrect link[edit]

In the list of links at the end of the article the Newsboys' Strike needs to be corrected to 1899 not 1819. Thanks. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:12, 4 December 2011 (UTC)

Consistency: Labour and Labor[edit]

There are several instances of both the words Labour and Labor in this article. However, even though there are only 36 instances of labor, there are over 100 instances of labour. Many thanks to command F.

Should it be made so there is only one? If so, which one? (talk) 01:34, 16 February 2012 (UTC)

Does it really matter? The point is people whoever can read the English-language article will be able to read it. It really doesn't matter which way "labor" is spelled, or how many times it is spelled a certain way. (talk) 10:20, 22 February 2013 (UTC)

Child Labor's Decrease Over the Years In USA[edit]

In 1916 and 1918, congress passed laws that would apply equally to all American children, however the Supreme Court declared them unconstitutional because they denied children the freedom to contract work.

During the Great Depression, child labor decreased for adults more deserately needed a job more than children. During that time, there was a high unemployment rate along with a growing need for a better-educated work force. This gradually decreased the rate in child labor.

In 1938, Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act, which set a minimum wage and maximum hour standards for all workers and it additionaly placed limitations on child labor (15 and under could not manufacture nor mine). The law was amended in 1949.

Even with the laws we have today, there are many illegal child labor in USA. Hine, Russell Freedman ; with photographs by Lewis (1994). Kids at work : Lewis Hine and the crusade against child labor. New York: Clarion Books. pp. 93–97. ISBN 0395587034. 

Year Event
1916, 1918 Congress passed laws, however they got rejected.
1938 Roosevelt signed the Fair Labor Standards Act.
1930-1940 Great depression.
1949 The law was amended.

Child labor incidence reports and wikipedia's WP:UNDUE guidelines[edit]

Wikipedia guidelines suggest each article fairly represents all significant viewpoints that have been published by reliable sources, in proportion to the prominence of each viewpoint. Giving due weight and avoiding giving undue weight means that articles should consider what to include and with how much relative emphasis.

The discussion about corporations such as GAP etc., while in good faith and relevant, is excessive. For what it is worth, 90%+ of world's child labor - from Azerbaijan to Zimbabwe - has little to do with these corporations. Yet, there is undue weight on corporate side, and lack of due weight on relevant regional / rural / topical / policy issues across the world.

In terms of coverage, I acknowledge that our western media has covered this prominently. But western media circulates in less than 15% of world's population. If we include media from Africa, Asia, Latin America, there is undue weight in these GAP and related stories, and deserve to be trimmed down (but not eliminated). Further, if we weigh the prominence of viewpoints in articles and publications from United Nations organizations such as ILO, UNICEF, other global institutions such as World Bank, IMF, peer reviewed journals covering child labor - then WP:DUE guidelines suggest that these corporate sections be significantly trimmed, and the encyclopedic summary in this wiki article include relevant regional / topical / policy viewpoints that these WP:RS sources prominently cover.

Comments on improving this part of this wiki article are welcome. ApostleVonColorado (talk) 21:49, 15 July 2012 (UTC)

History of Child Labour[edit]

There is no article History of child labour. I suggest, that it should be made from parts of this article. Sarcelles (talk) 20:05, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

Why? Please note that unnecessary content forking makes wikipedia less useful to its readers, and multiple articles on the same topic are more difficult to maintain for content contributors. See WP:CFORK.
If you have a lot more content to add to the history, please consider a temporary article in a sandbox. I do not support what you suggest: 'take parts of this article and make a new article.' ApostleVonColorado (talk) 21:05, 23 July 2012 (UTC)

POV Dispute[edit]

I notice that this article deals mainly with Great Britain and the United States. I am doing a research project that deals with German Child Labor, and there is next to nothing on Germany. I would ask that someone please get some facts on other european countries in here.Cbrittain10 (talk|contribs) 13:32, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

There's no pov involved. language of the RS is the main barrier regarding Germany. I hope Cbrittain10 adds text from his research before waiting around for others to do so. Rjensen (talk) 13:48, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 27 November 2012[edit]

Add This Link For Child Labour Suggestions Rohibook (talk) 12:42, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

Not done: Please see the policy on external links. The external links section as it stands is already a bit excessive, and I'm not inclined to add to it. —KuyaBriBriTalk 15:50, 27 November 2012 (UTC)

topic Child labour laws and initiatives[edit]

I think it shouldn't be "Three countries yet to domestically ratify the 1990 Convention include Somalia, South Sudan and the United States.[64][65]" but Three countries yet do domestically ratify the 1990 Convention include Somalia, South Sudan and the United States.[64][65]. As I'm not registered in the english Wikipedia long enough I can't change it myself, could smb? Thank you. --Macuser10 (talk) 15:56, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Not done: The syntax is a bit awkward but the grammar is correct. Your suggested wording would mean that they ratify it (in the present tense, which doesn't make sense). Rivertorch (talk) 06:09, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
I simplified the wording. See if it makes more sense to you now. Rivertorch (talk) 06:13, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
I agree that my suggestion was wrong; now it´s better. thanks--Macuser10 (talk) 14:41, 20 January 2013 (UTC)

Colonial Empires[edit]

The date 1650 seems arbitrary in the section on Colonial Empires. There is no source. This blog post ( refers to the Laws of Burgos that had provisions in them concerning child labor. Maybe this section should be expanded. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:22, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Their is nothing about the benefits of child labour[edit]

I don't want to sound evil but just hear me out... Child labour in sweatshops can be a better alternative to other proffesions. Children are not forced into working in sweatshops and working in a sweatshop is often a better option than prostitution and scavenging — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:31, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

I question your blanket statement that "children are not forced into working in sweatshops". However, the view you're expressing about the lesser of various evils is one I've heard before, and it may have some merit. To mention it in the article, it needs to be reliably sourced. If you find a good source, please provide a link to it here, along with some proposed text and an indication of where you want it to go. Rivertorch (talk) 20:07, 1 June 2013 (UTC)

Article on Child labour by country[edit]

I would like to write an article on child labour. I suggest that it should contain an introduction and a list of countries with more than a million children between 5 and 14 working, listed by the respective number of children working. Sarcelles (talk) 21:23, 25 January 2014 (UTC)

That is a good idea. It would make it easier for people researching on Wikipedia to find specific info. Hendrick 99 (talk) 04:55, 31 January 2014 (UTC)

Mother Mary Jones[edit]

This shows that Jones called child workers slaves in the 20th Century USA (see #1) & details of their work/lives, & it has lots of great history, can you add it? Hillmon7500 (talk) 00:54, 2 March 2014 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 2 April 2014[edit] (talk) 19:34, 2 April 2014 (UTC) Every day, millions of children in India wake up with nothing to look forward to except hours of back-breaking labour working everywhere from stone quarries to carpet factories to rice mills. Children as young as 5 years-old are kept from school, forced to work 7 days a week for up to 18 hours a day and end up with crippling injuries, respiratory disorders and chronic pain.

Because these children are often left illiterate and plagued with health problems, they are – in a cruel twist of fate – less likely to find employment once they reach adulthood. This continued enslavement of children traps generations of Indians in a vicious cycle of slavery, illiteracy and poverty.

Thankfully, the Indian Parliament is considering legislation called the “Child and Adolescent Labour Abolition Bill,” which:

1. Prohibits the employment of children up until 14 years of age,
2. Outlines harsher sentences for violators of child labour laws and
3. Provides for monitoring of suspected instances of child slavery.

What is child labour :

           Considerable differences exist between the many kinds of work children do. Some are difficult and demanding, others are more hazardous and even morally reprehensible. Children carry out a very wide range of tasks and activities when they work.

Defining child labour

Not all work done by children should be classified as child labour that is to be targeted for elimination. Children’s or adolescents’ participation in work that does not affect their health and personal development or interfere with their schooling, is generally regarded as being something positive. This includes activities such as helping their parents around the home, assisting in a family business or earning pocket money outside school hours and during school holidays. These kinds of activities contribute to children’s development and to the welfare of their families; they provide them with skills and experience, and help to prepare them to be productive members of society during their adult life.

The term “child labour” is often defined as work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity, and that is harmful to physical and mental development.

It refers to work that: mentally, physically, socially or morally dangerous and harmful to children; and
2.interferes with their schooling by:
3.depriving them of the opportunity to attend school;
4.obliging them to leave school prematurely; or
5.requiring them to attempt to combine school attendance with excessively long and heavy work.

In its most extreme forms, child labour involves children being enslaved, separated from their families, exposed to serious hazards and illnesses and/or left to fend for themselves on the streets of large cities – often at a very early age. Whether or not particular forms of “work” can be called “child labour” depends on the child’s age, the type and hours of work performed, the conditions under which it is performed and the objectives pursued by individual countries. The answer varies from country to country, as well as among sectors within countries.

What is child labour?

                      Child labour is a complex problem and numerous factors influence whether children work or not. Poverty emerges as the most compelling reason why children work. Poor households spend the bulk of their income on food and the income provided by working children is often critical to their survival. However, poverty is not the only factor in child labour and cannot justify all types of employment and servitude. Countries may be equally poor and yet have relatively high or relatively low levels of child labour.
            Other factors include:

1. Barriers to education 2.Culture and tradition 3.Market demand 4.The effects of income shocks on households 5.Inadequate/poor enforcement of legislation and policies to protect children

Effective abolition of child labour :

                Children enjoy the same human rights accorded to all people. But, lacking the knowledge, experience or physical development of adults and the power to defend their own interests in an adult world, children also have distinct rights to protection by virtue of their age. One of these is protection from economic exploitation and from work that is dangerous to the health and morals of children or which hampers the child's development.

CHILD Protection & Child Rights :

                          Poverty and lack of social security are the main causes of child labour. The increasing gap between the rich and the poor, privatization of basic services and the neo-liberal economic policies are causes major sections of the population out of employment and without basic needs. This adversely affects children more than any other group. Entry of multi-national corporations into industry without proper mechanisms to hold them accountable has lead to the use of child labour. Lack of quality universal education has also contributed to children dropping out of school and entering the labour force. A major concern is that the actual number of child labourers goes un-detected. Laws that are meant to protect children from hazardous labour are ineffective and not implemented correctly.

A growing phenomenon is using children as domestic workers in urban areas. The conditions in which children work is completely unregulated and they are often made to work without food, and very low wages, resembling situations of slavery. There are cases of physical, sexual and emotional abuse of child domestic workers. The argument for domestic work is often that families have placed their children in these homes for care and employment. There has been a recent notification by the Ministry of Labour making child domestic work as well as employment of children in dhabas, tea stalls and restaurants "hazardous" occupations.

Bonded child labour is a hidden phenomenon as a majority of them are found in the informal sector. Bonded labour means the employment of a person against a loan or debt or social obligation by the family of the child or the family as a whole. It is a form of slavery. Children who are bonded with their family or inherit a debt from their parents are often found in agricultural sector or assisting their families in brick kilns, and stone quarries. Individual pledging of children is a growing occurrence that usually leads to trafficking of children to urban areas for employment and have children working in small production houses versus factories. Bonded labourers in India are mostly migrant workers, which opens them up to more exploitation. Also they mostly come from low caste groups such as dalits or marginalised tribal groups. Bonded child labourers are at very high risk for physical and sexual abuse and neglect sometimes leading to death. They often are psychologically and mentally disturbed and have not learnt many social skills or survival skills.

Child labour in India is addressed by the Child Labour Act, 1986 and National Child Labour Project.

Not done: it's not clear what changes you want made. Please mention the specific changes in a "change X to Y" format. — {{U|Technical 13}} (tec) 23:02, 2 April 2014 (UTC)

Eliminating Child Labor in the US[edit]

Tprevo5728 (talk) 23:18, 6 April 2014 (UTC)It took many attempts for child labor to be regulated successfully in the United States. Many laws were passed but there were many loopholes in them and they were not always enforced. In fact, laws passed in 1916 and 1918 were said to be unconstitutional. However, the main reasons that child labor was stopped were not from laws, but from machinery. New machinery did what the children had done, and adults with at least some education and skills were needed to work these machines. Also, in 1938, The Fair Labor Standards Act was passed, which set a national minimum wage and limits on child labor including that children under 16 could not work in mines and manufacturing.[1] Tprevo5728 (talk) 23:18, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ "Childhood Lost: Child Labor during the Industrial Revolution". Eastern Illinois University. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 

United States Industrial Revolution[edit]

Tprevo5728 (talk) 23:46, 6 April 2014 (UTC)Child labor in the United States reached its height during the Industrial Revolution. Many immigrants came to the United States hoping for a better life, but many of them ended up doing physical labor with their children. Children were needed because they were nimble and small, so they could get in small spaces adults could not. It was difficult for children to organize unions, so they had no say in what they were paid and how long they worked. Therefore, children worked as long as 14 hours with few breaks. Most of them were just fighting to stay above the poverty level, so they did not go to school much or in some cases at all. They often had the most dangerous jobs like handling the dangerous tools and carrying heavy loads with the worst conditions. Many children got caught in machinery and got injured or killed, while others died from diseases like cancer.[1] [2] Tprevo5728 (talk) 23:46, 6 April 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ "Childhood Lost: Child Labor During the Industrial Revolution". Eastern Illinois University. Retrieved January 14, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Child Labor". Retrieved February 2, 2014. 

Edit request: Definition of child labour[edit]

In practice, there are two very different criteria in common use for classifying children's work as child labour. One is the criterion that you have here: serious hazards and any type of harm. There is general agreement that children should be protected from harm in such work, although there may be differences in assessing harm and hazards, and in what to do about them.

The other is the employment of children below a legal minimum age, focussing on employment and age irrespective of harm and hazards. This second criterion overlooks harmful work within the home, and prohibits much part-time work that could be beneficial to children outside school hours or school terms, or to children who for some other reason are out of school. The correlation between child labour thus defined and child labour as harmful work is widely assumed, but to my knowledge has never been verified by empirical data.In many situations, benign work is prohibited by minimu8m-age criteria. Although there is some overlap between the two criteria, enforcing minimum-age standards frequently deprives children of useful opportunities and do not always work for the best interests of children. Indeed, they discourage people from acknowledging the full value of children’s contributions, and encourage exploiting their work as unpaid ‘help’.

It is not appropriate for Wikipedia to get involved in this debate, but it should provide information on the very different criteria. The two criteria are frequently blurred in the media and by many organisations, sometimes deliberately for political purposes. Wikipedia should not endorse such blurring.

On two minor points, to cover harmful work of self-employed children and children undertaking harmful work outside employment, in the first line the word ‘employment’ should be changed to ‘engaging’. Taken literally, the clause ‘deprives children of their childhood’ is meaningless. Notwithstanding ILO usage, you cannot deprive someone of childhood. But you can denigrate childhoods that are different and difficult, which is what this ethnocentric clause does. It offers no information and should be deleted.

I suggest the first paragraph of the article be edited to make two paragraphs something like this:

Child labour primarily refers to the engaging of children in any work that interferes with their ability to attend regular school, and that is mentally, physically, socially or morally dangerous and harmful.[3] This practice is exploitative and is condemned by many international organisations.

The term ‘child labour’ is also widely used in a legal sense to refer to work that contravenes legislation establishing a minimum age for employment, whether or not such work is in any way harmful to children. Legislation across the world prohibits child labour in this sense.[4][5] These laws do not consider all work by children as child labour; exceptions include work by child artists, supervised training, certain categories of work such as those by Amish children, and others[6][7] ; but light economic work available to children in poor communities is not normally excepted. While legislation establishing a general minimum age for employment serves to keep children out of the labour force, there is debate over whether this serves their best interests, or whether rather it restricts opportunities for useful experience and chances for poor children to improve their lives.

See Bourdillon, Michael, Deborah Levison, William Myers, and Ben White. Rights and Wrongs of Children's Work. Rutgers Series in Childhood Studies. edited by Myra Bluebond-Langner New Brunswick, etc.: Rutgers University Press, 2010. (talk) 19:12, 22 October 2014 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Charles4597 (talkcontribs) 07:37, 9 April 2014 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 30 July 2014[edit]

please give more in india (talk) 19:12, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: as you have not requested a specific change.
If you want to suggest a change, please request this in the form "Please replace XXX with YYY" or "Please add ZZZ between PPP and QQQ".
Please also cite reliable sources to back up your request, without which no information should be added to, or changed in, any article. - Arjayay (talk) 20:23, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Major work on bonded child labour in India[edit]

Bonded Labour — Preceding unsigned comment added by Junned1098 (talkcontribs) 09:24, 11 September 2014 (UTC)

Edit request for 22 October 2014[edit]

In the section Colonial empires, second paragraph, second sentence, please change the wikilink [[Head Tax]] to [[tax per head|head tax]]. This will bypass what is currently a redirect to a disambiguation page, replacing it with a link to the correct article. Thanks in advance. (talk) 19:12, 22 October 2014 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Stickee (talk) 00:36, 23 October 2014 (UTC)

Europe respectively Switzerland and Wiedergutmachungsinitiative, Verdingkinder and Kinder der Landstrasse[edit]

Hi, started the section Child labour#Other European countries (Russia is mentionned before), i.e. primarly those section Switzerland, focus on Wiedergutmachungsinitiative, Verdingkinder and Kinder der Landstrasse, affected around 100,000 children from the 1920s to the 1970s in Switzerland; so imho it's worth to be mentioned here. Some referernces are added in the wiki, among them originating from BBC News and New York Times. As not being my 'focus' within EN-WP, i hope it's a usefull minor start of Switzerland-related Child labour, and therefore i just allow to also mention the so-called Kaminfegerkinder ("chimney sweep children") and chidren working p.e. in spinning mills in 19th-century Switzerland, hoping a more engaged Wikipedia enthusiast may contribute some more adequate additions. Thx and kindly regards, Roland zh 21:33, 15 November 2014 (UTC)


2% of the article devoted to Switzerland are too much.Sarcelles (talk) 17:50, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

Hi, i see, also a statistical question, therefore with the above mentioned restrictions, so you other Wikipedian enthusiasts are interested, Child labour in Switzerland will be just started, and some linkfixes within Child labour are done. Kindly regards, Roland zh 20:12, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 5 January 2015[edit]

A boy repairing a tire in Gambia.

Accurate present day child labour information is difficult to obtain because of disagreements between data sources as to what constitutes child labour. In some countries, government policy contributes to this difficulty. For example, the overall extent of child labour in China is unclear due to the government categorizing child labour data as “highly secret”.[1] China has enacted regulations to prevent child labour; still, the practice of child labour is reported to be a persistent problem within China, generally in agriculture and low-skill service sectors as well as small workshops and manufacturing enterprises.[2][3] Abhilashajain950 (talk) 12:17, 5 January 2015 (UTC)

Red question icon with gradient background.svg Not done: it's not clear what changes you want to be made. Please mention the specific changes in a "change X to Y" format. — {{U|Technical 13}} (etc) 13:08, 5 January 2015 (UTC)

When people use child labor, they are hurting the world and Gods people. STOP CHILD LABOR!!!!!!! — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2607:FCC8:E141:7100:F8F1:897:CB4A:A58D (talk) 20:27, 10 March 2015 (UTC)

  1. ^ "Children's Rights: China". Law Library of Congress, United States. 2012. 
  2. ^ Karine Lepillez (2009). "The dark side of labour in China" (PDF). 
  3. ^ "Who is the culprit of child labor". Hichkey. 29 December 2014. 

Semi-protected edit request on 20 March 2015[edit]

labor is spelled wrong everywhere

Zac6502 (talk) 14:37, 20 March 2015 (UTC)

X mark.svg Not done: See MOS:ENGVAR. Wikipedia accepts all varieties of English and there is no need to change one to another, with a few exceptions, such as if the subject is British (then it would be desirable to write the article in British English). Otherwise, if the article was originally written as British English, it should stay as British English. --I am k6ka Talk to me! See what I have done 14:43, 20 March 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 28 March 2015[edit]

Moeyzein (talk) 00:19, 28 March 2015 (UTC) cjild labour is about people who work at young ages

X mark.svg Not done The article already has encyclopedic language stating much the same thing. --NeilN talk to me 00:22, 28 March 2015 (UTC)

ENGVAR, direct quotes, and hyperlinks[edit]

Just a note to be careful. This article is in British English and uses the spelling "labour" consistently in running text; that's fine.

But there are two important exceptions. First, you never change the spelling of a direct quote. If the quote says "labor", you say "labor", or else you paraphrase and remove the quotation marks.

Second, before I fixed it, there was a footnote with a hyperlink to a website of the Smithsonian Institution. The Smithsonian's URL used "labor", but the hyperlink used "labour", so it was broken. My guess is that someone just went through and did a global replace at some point. Please don't do that. It's fine to scan through from time to time and make sure the article keeps the British spelling, but you have to do it in a way that takes the exceptions into account. --Trovatore (talk) 21:02, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

Another exception: Proper names. For example Labor Day (when referring to the American holiday) and National Child Labor Committee. --Trovatore (talk) 23:24, 22 April 2015 (UTC)

South Sudan[edit]

I corrected the Child Labour Convention part of the article.

It said South Sudan didn't ratify the Convention yet, but it is not a party to the convention according to Other articles have sources such as that claim South Sudan is the 195th participant (yet the page states 194). I'm also not sure whether Somalia did or didn't ratify the Convention: some say it did but only domestically. As far as I can tell, that means that, officially, Somalia didn't ratify the Convention. Olivier Diotte (talk) 17:48, 29 April 2015 (UTC)

Child Work merger[edit]

I think the discussion at Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Child Work was too brief and should be reviewed. Child Work and Child labour are different concepts. The former describes work which is beneficial to children while the latter describes work which is harmful to children. Biscuittin (talk) 11:44, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 26 June 2015[edit]

in our india the most common cases in child labour are in delhi sides.This information is very important to whole over the world — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:16, 26 June 2015 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to one external link on Child labour. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, please set the checked parameter below to true to let others know.

YesY Archived sources have been checked N but failed to be useful/working  Stick to sources! Paine  21:12, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

Cheers. —cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 10:09, 29 August 2015 (UTC)

New Additions[edit]

Although I have the whole article posed here, I check on the talk page and no major changes occur a lot. This is a pretty quiet page. So as I update my Sandbox I will continue to check the current article to make sure no major changes have been made that would substantially change my editing process.

My five substantial changes:

- Edit the whole article for grammar issues using Grammarly to help maintain a consistence and just clean up the article. -Created a new section called "Child Labour Laws by Country" -Rearranged the article to included Colonial empires, Switzerland, and the Soviet Union in my new section. -I also edited those three sections and determined what information I needed to add for each one. -Colonial Empires Section -Add New Information about child labour during the time listed. -What is identified as a colonial empire? -Switzerland -Add new information about child labor, such as when the current law was passed and how it happened. -The Soviet Union -Add information on child labour that occurred before 1922. -I also added a section for Latin America and India. -I will add information on child labour in the past, when current labour laws were passed and why, and what child labour is like now. -This is where a majority of my new material will go. This is what I will be working on this most in the coming week. Asievers4 (talk) 01:01, 23 October 2015 (UTC)AS Asievers4 (talk) 00:59, 23 October 2015 (UTC)AS — Preceding unsigned comment added by Asievers4 (talkcontribs) 00:55, 23 October 2015 (UTC)

Be sure to look at British spelling conventions - don't change without consulting. I look forward to seeing your updates. Have you been able to find the facts you listed here?Prof.Vandegrift (talk) 18:26, 30 October 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 7 November 2015[edit]

Child labour incidents
Recycling of batteries

<Copyvio redacted>


File:Reclycling batteries.jpg
Recycling batteries in Calcutta, India

Ilsederouw (talk) 11:11, 7 November 2015 (UTC)

  • Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: We cannot accept copyrighted text from other sources. Almost all of your text was directly copied from your source and is a copyright violation. Even the phrases that were not directly copied were too close to be used in an article. See Wikipedia:Close paraphrasing for more information on that. All contributions must be written in your own words and not taken from elsewhere. --Stabila711 (talk) 07:19, 20 November 2015 (UTC)


Semi-protected edit request on 9 November 2015 - adding a new subtitle to Child Labour Laws and Initiatives[edit]

Throughout the years there have been many initiatives to try and eliminate the use of child labor in all facets of production. Some of these initiatives have succeeded and others have failed. One initiative in particular was found to of failed when looked at by a third party. This information is not found on the Child Labour Wikipedia article and the knowledge of the failed initiative should be known to the readers of the Child Labour Wikipedia article. The current laws and initiatives section on the wikipedia article mainly focuses on international laws and a few initiatives which encompass all facets of child labor and have been enforced in many countries. While the Wikipedia article does have a section where it breaks down Child Labour Incidents, there is no mention of Pakistan or the soccer ball industry. By adding a new section called, “Failed ‘Foul Ball’ Initiative” under the title “Child Labour Laws and Initiatives” in the “Child Labour” Wikipedia article, the reader will get a better understanding of the tried and failed attempt of the International Labor Organization to eliminate the use of children in the soccer ball industry in Pakistan. It will also inform the reader of the many issues that arise when trying to eliminate a problem such as child labour. Lastly, it will briefly educate the reader of the issue with soccer ball industry in Pakistan. Overall, this will be a positive and informative addition to the Wikipedia article.

What I am requesting to be added:

<Copyvio redacted>


Alexlang10 (talk) 00:33, 9 November 2015 (UTC)

  • Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: We cannot accept copyrighted text from other sources. Almost all of your text was directly copied from your source [1] and is a copyright violation. Even the phrases that were not directly copied were too close to be used in an article. See Wikipedia:Close paraphrasing for more information on that. All contributions must be written in your own words and not taken from elsewhere. --Stabila711 (talk) 07:09, 20 November 2015 (UTC)


  1. ^ Child Labor in the Soccer Ball Industry. (1999, February 1). Retrieved October 26, 2015.

Semi-protected edit request on 9 January 2016[edit]

Re:Adding a Northern Ireland paragraph. It would be good to point out that unlike in England, the minimum working age is 13 due to the fact that the country's main industry is agriculture. It would also be nice to point out that children working in NI up to the age of 16 do not have a set minimum wage and do not have to be registered as workers within businesses Citation: (talk) 18:38, 9 January 2016 (UTC)

Pictogram voting comment.svg Note: - Unsure about this. Would like to see some consensus first, but leaving it open for another editor to take a look. --allthefoxes (Talk) 06:16, 11 January 2016 (UTC)
Red information icon with gradient background.svg Not done: please establish a consensus for this alteration before using the {{edit semi-protected}} template. It may be a small point of concern, yet I for one wonder how many other countries could also be represented in an article like this, and should all those countries be included or should the article be limited in scope?  Be prosperous! Paine  00:48, 31 January 2016 (UTC)

History of child labour[edit]

I have had a bit of a crack at the early history of child labour. I'll try to get back to it. I think it needs a lot more structure. At present it is just a series of anecdotes about horrendous working conditions. It could be much more structured around the developments in child labour, when it became worse, how and when it was regulated. The article doesn't even mention Lord Shaftesbury!!! I would greatly welcome any assistance.Mozzie (talk) 13:26, 11 January 2016 (UTC)

brazil section[edit]

the brazil section of child labour by country starts with "Child labour has been a consistent struggle for children in Brazil ever since the country was colonized on April 22nd, 1550 by Pedro Álvares Cabral." this is a huge mistake, since brazil wasn't colonized by Cabral, who was a navigator that died around 1520. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:52, 27 January 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to 8 external links on Child labour. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

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X mark.svg Except for one [dead link] (as marked) YesY Archived sources have been checked to be working  Stick to sources! Paine  21:40, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 19:17, 6 February 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just added archive links to 6 external links on Child labour. Please take a moment to review my edit. If necessary, add {{cbignore}} after the link to keep me from modifying it. Alternatively, you can add {{nobots|deny=InternetArchiveBot}} to keep me off the page altogether. I made the following changes:

YesY Archived sources have been checked N but failed to be useful/working  Stick to sources! Paine  22:08, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

YesY Archived sources have been checked to be working  Stick to sources! Paine  22:08, 14 April 2016 (UTC)

Cheers.—cyberbot IITalk to my owner:Online 21:39, 27 February 2016 (UTC)

Potential positives of children working[edit]

I created this section following the closure of Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Child Work. I personally do not think it was wise to merge the article here as this is a well developed article and that one was a essay, but process is process. I have done the best I can with the information (it seemed to be mainly talking about positives of child labour so I named the section accordingly). I have not checked the sources to verify the information and it still reads to much like an essay to my mind. As the merge process is now complete, regular editors can edit it like normal now (including removing, moving and trimming) it if that is the best course for this article. Pinging @Rhododendrites: as they were the sole merge voter and may have had other ideas on how this was supposed to be merged. AIRcorn (talk) 08:54, 22 April 2016 (UTC)

@Aircorn: Thanks for the ping and for attempting the merge. My "merge selectively" was based on seeing that the nominated article used several reliable sources, but that it was first and foremost a duplicate, and also written like an essay. I'm perfectly content to defer to you and/or other editors more familiar with this page to make the call as to what that merge should look like. As the AfD was almost a year ago I don't quite remember what, if anything, jumped out as mergeworthy, so I don't have any strong feelings. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 13:31, 22 April 2016 (UTC)
The first time I read the page was when I made the merge so I would not consider myself familiar with this page. I am just working through a backlog at afd. In my opinion the section I just merged does not improve this article, which I think is an unintended or at least unrealised consequence of some merges. Will respond at your talk page in more detail on merge !votes in general. AIRcorn (talk) 06:49, 23 April 2016 (UTC)


There is undue weight on Switzerland, Switzerland being a small country with few child labour.Sarcelles (talk) 18:15, 11 May 2016 (UTC)

How many lines should the subsection have?

Kind regards,Sarcelles (talk) 17:21, 4 June 2016 (UTC)

References for further work on this article[edit]

Here are some reference that may be of use to future people working on this article:

  1. The ILO’s Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138) (
  2. The Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182) (
  3. The ILO’s Tripartite Declaration of Principles concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy of 1977
  4. The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda (

DStrassmann (talk) 15:00, 8 June 2016 (UTC)