Child-labor issue raised

| January 17, 2018

A Maltese member of the European Parliament has asked what is being done to help prevent children working on tobacco farms.

In a preamble to her question put to the EU Commission, Marlene Mizzi said that today, thousands of child workers spent summers working on tobacco farms, often to earn money needed for books, school supplies and backpacks, or to help their parents pay the bills.

‘Many experience symptoms of acute nicotine poisoning, including nausea, vomiting, headaches, and dizziness,’ she said.

‘Public health studies have shown that tobacco farmworkers have nicotine levels in their bodies equal to smokers in the general population. ‘Moreover, it is dangerous for children to work 12 hours a day in the sun and high heat while absorbing nicotine and pesticides.

‘Working in tobacco can be perilous for adults, but it is especially harmful to children whose bodies and brains are still developing.’

Mizzi then asked: ‘Can the Commission clarify what measures it plans to take with regard to the tobacco industry, in order to protect the health of children by preventing hazardous child labour on tobacco farms?’

The question is due to be answered by the Commission in writing.

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Category: Breaking News, Leaf, People

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