Home World News USDOL Recognizes 2024 Iqbal Masih Award Winners for Combating Child Labor

USDOL Recognizes 2024 Iqbal Masih Award Winners for Combating Child Labor

U S Department Of Labor
US Department of Labor (DOL)

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has honored the recipients of the 2024 Iqbal Masih Award for the Elimination of Child Labor, highlighting their exceptional contributions to eradicating the worst forms of child labor.

This year’s recipients, the Wadi El Nil Association in Egypt and Andrews Addoquaye Tagoe from Ghana, have been instrumental in championing this cause.

Deputy Undersecretary for International Affairs Thea Lee praised the awardees, stating, “The recipients of the 2024 Iqbal Masih Award are champions in the fight against child labor. Their unwavering efforts and achievements have rescued children from hazardous work and created economic opportunities for families, disrupting the cycle of child labor in Egypt and Ghana.”

Wadi El Nil Association has been a key player in combatting child labor in Egypt’s limestone mining sector for over two decades. They have rescued children from hazardous quarries, provided access to education and skills development, and offered microloans to families to break the link between poverty and child labor. The association has also supported vulnerable families during the pandemic, collaborating with community organizations and volunteers.

Andrews Addoquaye Tagoe, the Deputy General Secretary of the General Agricultural Workers Union of the Ghana Trade Union Congress, has played a pivotal role in advancing child and workers’ rights in Ghana. He has formalized the agricultural economy in rural areas, worked with communities to eliminate child labor, and facilitated the transition of thousands of children from child labor to school. His advocacy efforts have created a strong network of anti-child labor advocates.

Established by Congress in 2008, the Iqbal Masih Award for the Elimination of Child Labor honors its namesake, a Pakistani child sold into slavery at the age of four. After escaping at age ten, Masih became a prominent advocate against child exploitation but was tragically killed in his native Pakistan at the age of twelve. The award serves to recognize and celebrate those who continue Masih’s legacy by working tirelessly to end child labor globally.

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