CAEI Celebrates the World Day Against Child Labor by Sensitizing Hundreds of Children
SAN PEDRO DE MACORÍS. About 400 children and students from the schools and bateyes of the Agricultural Division of Consorcio Azucarero de Empresas Industriales (CAEI) joined the World Day Against Child Labor event organized by CAEI.
This celebration, which included a mass followed by a cultural event, took place in the playground of the batey San Felipe. Alberto Potes, Executive Vice President of CAEI, led the event.
The mass was officiated by Father Fisner Vaillant, the parish priest of the Santo Cura de Ars Church, of the municipality of Consuelo. José Justo, Director of the San Felipe School, delivered a motivational speech emphasizing that education is the fundamental basis of development. Likewise, six students from this educational center shared how proud they are to study in this school, as well as their thoughts on the importance of learning, and stated that in the future they would like to have a professional career.
CAEI's Executive Vice President, Alberto Potes, highlighted the company's efforts to guarantee education, health, sports and cultural activities for the children living in its bateyes.
"We want everyone to understand that our children and adolescents should not work, rather attend school and participate in sports and cultural activities, so they grow up in a comprehensive way," Potes said. He reaffirmed CAEI’s policy which bans child labor in both its operations and those of suppliers. "Child labor deprives children of their dignity and impairs their development. Education is the only solution," Potes said.
The folk-dance group of Nuevo Cayacoa participated in the cultural program, as well as the children's choir of El Guano. The children’s group of Ga gá from the batey Contador closed the event. Through these types of activities, CAEI raises awareness in children and their families, on the need for children to go to school, and join the cultural and sports activities that the consortium promotes through its Department for Cane Communities.
Since 2002, CAEI has adopted a policy of Zero Tolerance for Child Labor, in which the company "does not promote, accept or tolerate that children under 18 years work paid activities, nor in agricultural or industrial activities supporting relatives or individuals in general."