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Children Working in the Carpet Industry in India, Nepal and Pakistan: Summary Report of the Carpet Research Project

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[Excerpt] In 2007, the Bureau of International Labor Affairs, United States Department of Labor (ILAB- USDOL) funded a cooperative agreement with Macro International (ICF) entitled "Research on Children Working in the Carpet Industry of India, Nepal, and Pakistan" (Carpet Project). The overall objective was to develop reliable and accurate data and information on the prevalence, nature, and demand for children’s work in the export-oriented handmade carpet industry in India, Nepal, and Pakistan (carpet industry). The project, which studied the supply chain leading to the production of carpets as well as the production of carpets, had three immediate objectives: 1. Increase the knowledge base on the prevalence and nature of child labor in the carpet industry. This objective was achieved by: 1.1. The Prevalence and Conditions (PC) Study: a large-scale quantitative survey of children working in the factory and household-based carpet industry in all three countries. The PC Study produced nationally representative estimates of the prevalence of working children and child labor and descriptions of the children’s living and working conditions for each country. 1.2. The Sending Areas (SA) Study in Nepal: a qualitative rapid assessment of child trafficking and bonded labor focusing on rural children who migrated to work in the carpet factories in the Kathmandu valley. 2. Increase the knowledge base on the demand for child labor in the carpet industry. This objective was achieved by: 2.1. The Labor Demand (LD) Study: a longitudinal panel study of carpet-producing establishments in all three countries to understand employers’ demand for child workers in the carpet industry. 3. Develop and pilot-test good practices in the elimination of child labor in the carpet industry. This objective was achieved by: 3.1. The Schooling Incentives Project Evaluation (SIPE): a randomized controlled trial to assess the impact of two educational interventions on children’s attendance and success in school. 3.2. The Programs and Practices Review: a review and analysis of programs and practices (or interventions) that targeted child labor in the carpet industry in one or more of the three countries. This report presents an integrated summary of the results from those studies, starting with the results of the PC and SA Studies. Further background information, methodological details, and results may be found in the reports for each individual study (see References).

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India; Nepal; Pakistan; child labor; carpet industry


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Union Local


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