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Friday, 24 July 2015

Children Of The Dirty Gold

Children Of The Dirty Gold:

India's Criminal Child Mines


Uncovering Bolivia's Controversial Child Labour Law


How Asia's Economic Miracle Collapsed


Hard Labour Nicaragua


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of Philippines' 5.5 million child workers are risking their lives
digging for "Dirty Gold" in unbelievable conditions. Desperate men and
children scour underwater mine-shafts in this terrifying report.

through nothing more than a thin pipe connected to an air compressor,
going 30 foot deep underwater for hours in search of gold is all in a
day’s work for 16-year-old Gerald. "I'm afraid, if the earth collapses, I
will get buried underneath" says the teenager. Surrounded by rock walls
in the pitch black darkness of the water, the men chip away at walls
for 3 hours. They find no gold. For many like Gerald school is a distant
memory, and illegally diving for gold the only alternative to
starvation. Hundreds of deaths by electrocution, drowning and even the
possibility of Mercury poisoning have had little impact on compressor
mining activities, which continue un-policed and unregulated. There
appears little hope of change on the horizon. "If I could only give job
opportunities - I will take them away from compressor mining. It is just
that I have no alternative at this point" says Ricarte Padilla, Mayor
of Jose Panganiban - Philippines' so-called "Gold Coast". As it is, the
children and family men unearthing 60-80kg of gold per month see the
lions share of wealth disappear into the Chinese black market.

ABC Australia - Ref 6509

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