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Redhnna warns about an increase in child exploitation scenarios | via: Radio Fe y Alegria

Oswin J. Barrios | Venezuela | June 12, 2023 | Photo: referential.

Unofficial translation made by HumVenezuela…

According to Leonardo Rodriguez, member of the Red por los Derechos Humanos de los Niños, Niñas y Adolescentes (Redhnna), there is an increase in the participation of children and adolescents in mining exploitation in Bolivar State, as well as in the economic dynamics, legal or not, on the border between Venezuela and Colombia.

In an interview granted to the program Punto y Seguimos, broadcast by Radio Fe y Alegría Noticias, he detailed that they have observed children working as “caleteros” transporting merchandise “which is a labor exploitation job“.

In Rodriguez’s opinion, the current economic crisis in the country and the great difficulties that families have in accessing basic goods and services, such as domestic gas for food preparation, water and electricity, are the first elements that force children and adolescents to have to work.

He mentioned that another element has to do with upbringing, as he considers that many children and adolescents are not raised by their parents as a consequence of forced migration.

“They are raised by relatives or third persons who do not assume the responsibility of guaranteeing the protection of these children, of preventing them from working; on the contrary, they stimulate this situation so that the child becomes a source of income in that home”, expressed the representative of Redhnna in the framework of the World Day against Child Exploitation to be commemorated this June 12.

In this sense, he regretted that public education in Venezuela is not a guarantor of school retention, since he considers that it does not guarantee the conditions for minors to remain within the educational system and that they seek other survival mechanisms.

“When a child is dedicated to work, he does not study, he has no space to do so. In the absence of this, there is no possibility of developing as a productive person. The doors are being closed to them from the start. From an early age they have a truncated adulthood,” he emphasized.

He indicated that a child exposed to work has no time for recreation or “for leisure, which is key for their integral development”. And from there other violations occur, such as the right to sexual and reproductive health. “Many of these children are victims of sexual abuse through trafficking networks,” he said.