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Children in Ghana, Nepal, Uganda Describe Grueling Hours, Low Pay

The unprecedented economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is pushing children into exploitative and dangerous child labor. Many children feel they have no choice but to work to help their families survive, but a rise in child labor is not an…
A child sits on the sidewalk in front of a display of goods to sell
News

Meager Government Aid Leaves Children Working Long Hours for Little Pay

The unprecedented economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic is pushing children into exploitative and dangerous child labor. Many children feel they have no choice but to work to help their families survive, but a rise in child labor is not an…
A child sits on the sidewalk in front of a display of goods to sell
News
Across the globe, people experiencing homelessness face serious risks—this was true before the Covid-19 pandemic. In many wealthy countries, homelessness has come to be seen as a fact of modern society. Some governments have claimed it can’t be…
Tents line a sidewalk on Golden Gate Avenue in San Francisco, Saturday, April 18, 2020.
News

Ensure Equal Access to Treatment; Invest in Community-Based Support

(Brussels) – Ghana’s Accra Psychiatric Hospital has confirmed that a patient has tested positive for Covid-19, causing concern about protection for other patients and staff, Human Rights Watch said today. The infected woman was admitted to the…
The dormitory in the men’s forensic ward of the Accra Psychiatric Hospital in Ghana. The dormitory has since been refurbished.
News

Sexual Exploitation and Harassment Also Widespread in Secondary Schools

A hard-hitting BBC television documentary, Sex for Grades, has uncovered rampant sexual abuse, harassment, and bullying of students at two prestigious universities in Nigeria and Ghana, and launched what will hopefully be a new movement.   …
Cartoon for Tanzania Education Report
News

African Governments Should Ensure Right to Education

  (Nairobi) - Tens of thousands of pregnant girls and adolescent mothers are banned or discouraged from attending school across Africa, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today, ahead of the Day of the African Child…
Students enrolled in the final year of lower secondary school in the classroom in a village in Kolda region, southern Senegal. Adolescent mothers and married girls study in this school.
Report
Summary When the head teacher found out that I was pregnant, he called me to his office and told me, “You have to leave our school immediately because you are pregnant.” —Jamida K., Kahama, Tanzania, April 2014 We don’t allow pregnant girls to…
News

Government Should Ensure Program Benefits Poorest and Rural Students

On September 12, Ghana’s new President Nana Akufo-Addo made good on his campaign promise to deliver free secondary education for children across the country. The President pledged “there will be no admission fees, no library fees…
Cartoon for Tanzania Education Report
News

Mercury Treaty to Enter Into Force

The fight against global toxic pollution has reached a critical milestone: the 50th country has ratified the United Nations Minamata Convention on Mercury, triggering its entry into force in August. Mercury is a shiny liquid…
A 12-year-old boy shows the mercury he carries in his trousers’ pockets for gold processing in Homase, Amansie Central district, Ashanti Region, Ghana.
News

‘She Decides’ Summit to Counter Trump’s ‘Global Gag Rule’

(Brussels) – Governments should pledge political and financial support for sexual and reproductive health to counter the United States’ “Global Gag Rule,” Human Rights Watch said today. The Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, and Sweden are hosting a summit in…
Women and girls wait with their children outside a doctor’s office in Chitwan, Nepal.
News
Last summer, Nina Nikolayevna lost the school in eastern Ukraine where she was the principal. It was shelled by heavy artillery fire during the armed conflict. Thirteen-year-old Martha was forced to flee her village in South Sudan because of…
School in Nikishine, eastern Ukraine, damaged during fighting between Ukrainian government and rebel forces from Aug. 2014 to Feb. 2015.
News

#WatchOurSchools Campaign Urges Leaders to End Military Use of Schools

The Hague – The Dutch government should be the first European Union nation to take concrete measures to implement the Safe Schools Declaration, Human Rights Watch said today at the opening of its #WatchOurSchools campaign. The declaration is designed to…
School in Nikishine, eastern Ukraine, damaged during fighting between Ukrainian government and rebel forces from Aug. 2014 to Feb. 2015.
News
When I visited the small-scale — or “galamsey”—gold mines in the Ashanti Region earlier this year, I met  “Kwame,” a quiet but self-assured 12-year-old. He dropped out of primary school about a year ago to help his mother feed his five younger siblings…
News

One Year On, Governments Should Commit to Action

(New York) – Governments should make an urgent commitment to protect people from the harmful effects of mercury by signing and ratifying the new Minamata Convention on Mercury, Human Rights Watch said today, on the eve of a high-level UN event about the…
News

Ministers Should Endorse, Implement Minamata Convention

(Geneva) – Health ministers should pledge to take comprehensive action to prevent and treat the negative health effects of mercury, a toxic chemical, Human Rights Watch said today. The World Health Assembly is scheduled to discuss a resolution on the new…
News

Governments Should Sign, Ratify to Protect Environment, Health

Governments around the world should immediately sign the new, groundbreaking Minamata Convention on Mercury, Human Rights Watch said today. Officials around the world will meet in Kumamoto, Japan beginning October 7, 2013, to formally adopt the treaty.…
News

Enforce Safety Standards, Prevent Child Labor in Artisanal Gold Mining

(Johannesburg) – A recent mining accident that killed 16 people at an unlicensed artisanal gold mine in Ghana underscores the need for tougher measures to end child labor and protect the safety of adult artisanal miners, Human Rights Watch said today.…