Amnesty International stages rally to end child labour outside Montreal Apple store

Click to play video: 'Protesters target Montreal Apple store' Protesters target Montreal Apple store
WATCH ABOVE: Amnesty International staged a rally outside the Apple Store on Sainte-Catherine Street Sunday afternoon to protest against child labour – Jun 12, 2016

MONTREAL – Activists gathered outside a downtown Apple store on Ste-Catherine Street Sunday afternoon to draw attention to the plight of child labourers.

Salil Shetty, Amnesty International‘s secretary general says the protest was organized to coincide with World Day against Child Labour.

The human rights group is calling on Apple to address how cobalt, used in lithium-ion batteries in its phones and laptop computers, is mined.

“The research we’ve done on the ground is that a lot of these lithium-ion batteries are produced from cobalt using child labour,” Shetty said.

Amnesty says children as young as seven work in cobalt mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo where over half the world’s cobalt is mined.

READ MORE: Canadians being kept in the dark about buying goods made by child labourers: report

Organizers say Apple and other companies are failing to do basic checks to ensure that cobalt mined by child labourers and adults working in dangerous conditions has not been used in their products.

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“Unfortunately some of the biggest companies in the world do not have proper human rights due-diligence in their supply chains,” Shetty said and added that most can’t answer the question: “Do your batteries have child labour?”

Today’s protest was one of many organized in cities across the world and Shetty said the group wants answers.

“We’re going to keep raising our voice,” Shetty said. “End child labour, tell us the truth.”

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