Bolivia Lowers Child Working Age to 10


Bolivia has passed a law that lowers the working age for children to 10. However, they must prove that they attend school and have permission to work from their parents.  The South American country is very poor and needs all the people they can get in the workforce. Parliament has also passed a law that gives children more protection. Murdering a child is met with a penalty of 30 years in prison.

According to the United Nations almost a million Bolivian children, about 15% of the whole workforce, do some kind of work to earn money for their families. While some of them wash dishes in restaurants or clean shoes, others do hard work in the country’s mines or help as labourers on fields.

International labour organisations are opposed to the new Bolivian law. While most developing countries want to raise the age of child labour Bolivia has taken a step in the other direction. They claim that children should not be allowed to work before they reach the age of 14.  They also stress that it is highly important for children to concentrate on getting a good education, which lays the foundation of getting a good job later on and leading the country out of poverty. Bolivia is already giving extra money to families who send their children to school.


Most politicians defend the new law and say that child labour already exists in Bolivia. The aim is to legalize it and give children more rights.



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  • according to = as said by ….
  • attend = go to
  • claim = to say that something is true
  • defend = stand up for
  • developing countries = poor countries of Africa, South America and Asia
  • highly = very
  • however = but
  • labourer = worker
  • law = rules of a country, made by the parliament
  • lay the foundation = to do something that will make it possible for something to be successful
  • legalize = to make something legal so that people are allowed to do it
  • lower = to make lower, reduce
  • mine = deep hole in the ground where people dig out valuable raw materials, like coal etc..
  • opposed = to be against something
  • penalty = punishment
  • permission = being allowed to do something
  • politician = person who works in the government or is a member of parliament or another political organization
  • poverty =situation of being poor
  • prison = place where people are locked up because they have committed a crime
  • protection = keeping safe
  • prove = to show that something is true by giving facts
  • raise = increase , put up
  • rights = something that you are officially allowed to do
  • stress = to make something important
  • workforce = all the people who work in a country