Civil rights struggle for education “underway”: Gordon Brown

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Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education. UN Photo/Mark Garten

A civil rights struggle by young people who are determined to get education is underway, according to Gordon Brown, the UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Global Education.

He told reporters in New York on Thursday that in the last two years, governments have recognized the importance of education to economic development.

It's estimated that 58 million children are out of school across the world and half a billion girls will never finish their education.

Mr Brown said young people are now prepared to fight for their rights.

"I think people will look back a hundred years from now and see a global civil rights struggle underway, girls determined that they will not be forced into early marriage, girls and boys determined to fight child labour which is denying them the opportunity of education and forcing them into jobs that in many ways are unsafe and trafficking which, of course, is one of the problems that you do need global coordinated action to deal with." (24")

Mr. Brown said the international community is on the final push to ensure that every child is at school to meet the Millennium Development Goal of universal primary education.

He pointed out that countries that are trying to meet that goal are now setting targets that will enable them to have a 100 per cent enrolment by the end of 2015.

Stephanie Coutrix, United Nations

Duration:  1’21″


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