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Only We Can Save The Children

From: Dick Meister
Length: 03:49

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It's up to us to curtail the widespread use of child labor.

Dick_meister_small It's time we halted the spread of child labor by refusing to buy the products and increase the profits of those who employ more than 200 million highly-exploited children in more than 70 countries.

Piece Description

It's time we halted the spread of child labor by refusing to buy the products and increase the profits of those who employ more than 200 million highly-exploited children in more than 70 countries.

Broadcast History

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Transcript

I remember checking into a small hotel in Coimbra, Portugal, with my wife Gerry in 1962, three very heavy suitcases in tow. Rushing out at the urgent clang of the desk clerk's bell came a uniformed bellhop. A midget, I supposed. But, no, it was a child, nine, maybe ten years old.

He smiled shyly and tugged at the suitcases, eager to lug them up the long, narrow staircases that led to our room. I wouldn't let go, but the clerk insisted. "It's his job," the clerk explained.

It was indeed his job, one that paid poorly and kept him from school – but a job necessary for his family's survival.

There were millions of others like him, aged 5 to 15, throughout southern Europe, and Asia and Africa and Latin America. They made up as much as one-third of the workforces in some countries. And they still do – fifty years later.

Although most countries have laws against child labor, and it is ban...
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Intro and Outro

INTRO:

Commentator Dick Meister says it's time we took a strong stand against child labor.

OUTRO:

Dick Meister is a longtime labor and political journalist.