Agric workers union to set up ‘bridge schools’

farmerThe General Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) of the Ghana Trades Union Congress is to set up “bridge schools” under its integrated area base approach towards the creation of Child Labour Free Zone (CLFZ) in Ghana.

The bridge school prepares children, who have never been to school, for the formal and non-formal education system in classes appropriate to their age.

Mr Andrews Tagoe, Head of Programmes at GAWU, who said this at a day’s national stakeholders consultative forum, said the CLFZ were geographical areas where all children had been systematically withdrawn from work and re-integrated into formal and full-time school.

He said the component of the CLFZ would include awareness raising, social mobilization, bridge school and support for teachers and improved education system.

Other interventions under the CLFZ initiatives include support for parents, aftercare, policy advocacy and guidance to convince and equip governments and other relevant actors to support the concept of child labour free zones.

He said international legal framework supported the creation of CLFZ citing International Labour Organisation’s Convention 138 and 182, the Children’s Act and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

He announced that the creation would be targeted at project communities before they were extended to other stakeholder communities.

Mr Kingsley Ofei-Nkansah, General Secretary of GAWU, said the union would collaborate with stakeholders to put in mechanism to eliminate child labour.

He said the initiative also sought to eliminate all forms of child labour and ensure formal full-time and quality education for all children at least until the age of 15.

“Child work is not child labour,” he noted.

The forum brought together civil society organisations, organised labour, government officials and other stakeholders.

Source: GNA

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