Minister of Labour Nimal Siripala de Silva says laws will be enacted during the next three months to increase the age limit for employment in Sri Lanka to 18 years.
The Minister said the Legal Draftsman’s Department is compiling necessary regulations to revise the Hazardous Work List through regulations to be introduced under the Women, Youth and Child Employment Act.
Minister de Silva was speaking at a discussion yesterday on action that will be taken to protect the rights of minors from being directed towards slavery and as domestic workers.
The discussion was attended by representatives of the Labour Department, the Attorney Generals Department, the Ministry of Justice, the Children and Women’s Bureau, the International Labour Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund.
Minister de Silva said steps will be taken to include domestic service in the Hazardous Work List through future legal amendments.
The Minister said employment of minors as domestic workers is a punishable offence, adding that the Labour Department is conducting a survey together with Samurdhi officers and other institutions to identify such minors engaged as domestic workers.
He called on the public to support this effort and to inform authorities of establishments and homes that have employed minors.
The Minister said according to the existing law, employing children below the age of 16 as domestic workers is prohibited.
He claimed the Legal Draftsman has been informed to increase the age limit of employment to 18.