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6 Int'l J. Child. Rts. 155 (1998)
Child Work and Education in Latin America

handle is hein.journals/intjchrb6 and id is 167 raw text is: ,A   The International Journal of Children's Rights 6: 155-177, 1998.  155
C © 1998 Kluwer Law International. Printed in the Netherlands.
Child work and education in Latin America *
National University of Colombia and Defence for Children International Colombia
A quick overview
This paper refers to the relationship between child work and education in
Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala and Peru, countries which aspire - like
others in the region  to balanced, equitable, and sustainable development,
with benefits that should be widely shared. Unfortunately, economic growth
in the region has resulted too often in maldistribution of means and fruits
of development between and among classes, cities and countrysides, and
the indispensable natural resource base has been damaged or pilfered. Only
too late is it recognized that the stability arising from a more balanced and
equitable development is important for general social progress. For example,
a strategy for alleviation of rural poverty and for fostering rural economic
growth must confront a history of neglect which has led to extreme poverty,
and to marginality as well as to exploitation of children, as shown in many
studies since 1990.
Lack of attention to education by most Latin American governments has
limited capacity to compete in the international markets, where the compara-
tive advantages are increasingly defined by a productivity based on scientific
and technological advances. As is known, the high concentration of income
in this region of the world is a result of combining traditional discrimina-
tory patterns of property with the decline of the labour market and levels of
remuneration, the regressive nature of the tax structure, and the rapid impair-
* The paper is based on reports of the International Working Group on Child Labour
(Brazil, Colombia, Chile and Guatemala) (see Salazar and Gfirate 1996) and on case studies
carried out in the same countries, Ecuador and Peru, excluding Chile (see UNICEF 1996 and
Salazar and Alarc6n 1996). On the concept of development and its shortcomings see papers
presented at the World Congress for Participatory Convergence (Cartagena, June 1997) in the
workshop coordinated by Arturo Escobar (forthcoming). The IWGCL (International Working
Group on Child Labour) was jointly set up by Defence for Children International (DCI) and
the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN).

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