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Heartbreaking Photographs of Child Labour In Philippine Gold Mine

Compressor miners working in the gold fields at Dalas Labo, a village in the provide of Camarines Norte on the island of Luzon...Compressor mining gets it name from the practice of using small gasoline engine compressors to feed air to miners though thin plastic tubes. The miners work in narrow water-filled shafts about a meter in diameter for up to two hours to fill sacks with gold bearing clay. The shafts are up to 40-feet deep, just deep enough for miners to avoid severe decompression problems when they surface. Compressor mining is considered the most dangerous type of mining due to the inherent instability of the pits. If a collapse happens, there is little recourse to reduce the miner...The practice takes physical stamina so small children aren't used but stronger teenagers sometimes move from the panning areas on the surface to the more dangerous work of compressor mining...Photos show compressor miners surfacing after time in the pits. The miners are in their teens...Other photos show children at work panning and breaking clay not the surface. ..Story Summary:.Small-scale gold mining in the Philippines uses mercury and cyanide to extract elemental gold from ore extracted from mines and pits dug by hand. Very young children, some as young as four, are put to work at less dangerous but still rigorous tasks in the gold mining areas. These include panning in streams or rivers and hauling ore sacks that can weigh up to 60 pounds. Children often play near mechanized equipment and highly toxic mercury and cyanide. These chemicals, used to help extract elemental gold from ore, are leached into nearby watersheds where fish and other marine life, mainstays of the Philippine diet, are poisoned. The high price of gold and the poor economy in many developing countries has led to an increase in small-scale gold mining throughout the world...Story Summary:.Small-scale gold mining in the Philippines uses mercury and cyanide to extract elemental gold from ore extra

The Philippines produced more than 1 million troy ounces of gold in 2011, ranking 18th in world production. More than half of that gold came from small-scale mines, where lots of people work illegally. Many of them are entire families, including very young children. Workers extract the gold from rock by hand or very primitive tools. They also use mercury in a process, which contaminates the area, water and food supplies. The process also exposes them to highly toxic mercury fumes.

Children risk injuries, long-term health problems or even death because of heavy, manual labor, exposure to dust and chemicals and, worst of all, mercury poisoning. In compressor mining, teenagers and young boys get down into deep pits filled with muddy water. They fill bags of ore in darkness, breathing through a tube attached to a compressor on the surface. They risk their lifes as the sides of the pits tend to collapse and bury them alive.

Photographer Larry C. Price took a trip to the Panique mining area about 10 kilometers outside the town of Aroroy on the Island of Masbate, and shot some heartbreaking photographs of child labour in Philippine gold mine. Check them out below.

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Photographs of Child Labour

Video by Journeyman Pictures

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anon_frank
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Child Labor and absue is used also in the Congo to mine coltan. Coltan is what you all have in smartphones Buy a smartphone made of fair trade collection of Coltan

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Geralt Nowak

There will be something about me. I'm too lazy now.

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