"Child labor, in other words, not only poses immediate health, safety and development risks, but is also associated with compromised earning prospects and less chance of securing decent work in the longer term," the ILO report released Wednesday said.
The organization says nearly 168 million children are trapped in underage work across the developing world, and it's a lack of education that remains one of the biggest risks to future job prospects.
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Those who leave school before they turn 15 are in danger of being closed out of the working world altogether, and never properly transition into proper jobs. Those who do are less likely to gain secure and stable contracts that on average last longer than 12 months, compared with their more educated peers.
Child laborers will often face short-term work, interspersed by bouts of unemployment and absences from the workforce, the ILO report explained, adding that approximately 75 million 15 to 24 year olds are currently unemployed around the world.