Monday, February 27, 2017

Hazardous Work for Minors Updated by DOLE

Historically, Philippine agriculture is an all hands operation for the family. It is not uncommon that the children of farmers end up as farmers themselves in tilling, planting and harvesting the produce of the land that they farm. 

But the Department of Labor and Employment has updated the list of hazardous work that children are banned into performing. 

According to Department Order No. 149-A proscribes banned child labor from farm related activities as follows.

1. Plant propagation activities (grafting, marcotting, budding and weeding of soil)
2. Clearing of land
3. Plowing
4. Harrowing
5. Irrigating
6. Irrigating
7. Constructing of paddy dikes
8. Cutting
9. Handling, spraying and application of harmful fertilizers
10. Handling of pesticides
11. Handling of herbicides and other toxic materials
12. Loading and carrying of heavy loads
13. Stripping and burning of fields

According to the Department Order also listed are activities in post-harvest, minors may not be employed in de-husking, scooping, sacking of products, charcoal making, hauling of products as led by animal guide, loading and unloading of packed farm products, coconut kilning and de-meating from shell or core, sealing and carting of produce for warehousing and transport to market and all ancillary work such as clearing, cleaning, and recycling of farm waste in its preparation as animal food and other related processes.

In livestock farming, work and related activities that are declared hazardous to minors are rearing activities that involve collecting, loading, unloading and transporting of feeds, maintenance and care of large and/or dangerous animals, collecting and disposal of dead animals, animal manure and other waste materials, administering of vaccines and vitamins, and handling of disinfectants used for cleaning animal pens/enclosures or for disinfecting animals.

In harvesting activities, work and activities that involve catching or collecting, ranching, and milking in preparation for warehousing or transport to market, and post-harvest activities including the packaging and processing of dairy and other animal by-products in preparation for warehousing and transport to market; and working in slaughterhouses or abattoirs.

According to DOLE, the best interest of children is the paramount consideration to ensure that their employment does not endanger their life, safety, health and morals, nor impair their normal development.

This is based on DO 149-A, series of 2017, issued on January 16, 2017, is an amendment to Department Order no. 149, series of 2016 on “Guidelines in Assessing and Determining Hazardous Work in the Employment of Persons below 18 years of age” particularly Section 6 – B “on Hazardous Work and Activities”, subsection (i) Farmers and Other Plant Growers and (ii) Animal Producers.

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The Mail Man

Author & Editor - The Philippines' Web Magazine on Agriculture.

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