Progress towards better respect of children’s rights. The role of the European Union in the eradication of child labour from global supply chains

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Alonso García, Serena
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Addressing the economic exploitation of children in global supply chains constitutes a pressing duty for the European Union, not only because of the numerous commitments into which the Union has entered in this respect but also because child labour constitutes a gross violation of children’s rights. Furthermore, child labour could be, if not eradicated, significantly reduced through the adoption of adequate norms and actions. As a mighty international actor, the Union has moral and legal responsibilities to act upon this egregious human rights violation. This thesis aims at determining what actions should the European Union undertake to try and meet target 8.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals. In the first chapter, I examine the issue of child labour in global supply chains. Then, I analyse and compare the Resolution on corporate due diligence and corporate accountability recently adopted by the European Parliament to other already-existing instruments to try and determine whether the proposed mechanism can be considered an adequate tool in the fight against the economic exploitation of children. Lastly, I propose additional non-legislative mechanisms tailored to the issue of child labour for the Union to complement any legislation on business and human rights that it will eventually adopt.
Second semester University: University of Southern Denmark / Danish Institute for Human Rights
children rights, child labour, European Union, business, corporate responsibility, business ethics, labour supply