KARACHI - "I am the victim of circumstances, I would have been in school but poverty compelled my parents to send me to work", said Aamir, a 13-year-old worker in a leather industry, while speaking at a child labour convention titled 'Let Us Live Like a Child Not Labourer' organised by Society for Protection of the Rights of Children (SPARC) in collaboration with All Pakistan Leather and Garment Workers Association here at Kornagi Park on Wednesday. Keeping in view the international efforts to combat child labour, SPARC has launched a weeklong countrywide campaign from June 6 against the child labour in hazardous occupations. With a view to highlight the worst impacts of work on the mental and physical health of child workers, an awareness-raising event was organised to involve parents, employers and workers at the industrial area of the city. More than two thousand families participated in the event and shared their views regarding child labour in leather garment, textile and chemical industries. The child workers also shared their experiences and problems they face during work. It was revealed that child labourers are poorly paid and excessive work is extracted from them. It was revealed during the discussion that most of the child workers in leather and chemical factories suffer from asthma, skin diseases and lungs infection. Participating in discussion, the parents of the child labourers said that due to increasing unemployment and price-hike, they have been compelled to get back their children from schools and seek jobs for them in order to meet the household expenditures. Talking about child labour in the country, Salam Dharejo, Regional Promotion Manager SPARC, pointed out that number of child labourers is increasing in the province especially in rural areas. Speaking on the occasion, Nasir Mansur, president of Labour Education Foundation, demanded the government to address the problems of child labourers through devising labour-friendly policies. Amjad Awan, president All Pakistan Leather and Garments Workers Union, said that proper safety measures have not been taken properly. He added that most of the labourers at the leather and garment industry are below eighteen years of age.  Sadia Baloch, Regional Manager, SPARC, Baba Ghiyas and Mudassir also spoke on the occasion.