Migrant Child Labour in Turkey : A critical analysis of multilevel governance targeting migrant child labour in Turkey
Abstract: Entering the 9th year of the Syrian Crisis, there are still more than 400 thousand school aged Syrian children considered ‘out-of-school’ in Turkey. Several previous studies as well as reports of International Organisations and Civil Society Organisations such as UNICEF and Support to Life argue that out-of-school Syrian children have formed part of the Turkish informal labour market. Restrained migration policies incorporated with the needs of global labour markets have caused precarisation of the migrant labour, and in the case of Turkey precarisation of migrant child labour as well. The aim of the current study is to critically analyse the strategies and interventions of this multilevel governance targeting migrant child labour. Hence, a qualitative research method was employed in order to answer the study’s research questions. First, document analysis was conducted to identify the multilevel institutional framework; and second, semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with selected informants working for International Organisations. By facilitating Carol Bacchi’s ‘What is the problem represented to be?’ (WPR) approach, each actor’s strategies and interventions directed to migrant child labour are scrutinised. While each actor by definition manages to identify the causes of (migrant) child labour, the strategies and interventions are constrained by the conventional migration management approach as well as the discourses of “the best interest of the child” and “fair trade”.
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