The International Organization for Migration's report on migration in Thailand argues that Thailand risks creating a "lost generation" of more than 100,000 migrant children who are stateless and deprived of education. According to the IOM, the children of migrant workers are not given Thai citizenship if they are born in Thailand, and because many of their parents are in the country illegally, most are not eligible for schooling.
The IOM said the Thai government last year had registered almost 1.3 million adult migrants from Laos, Cambodia and Burmese and found they had 93,000 children living with them, including 63,000 Burmese children under age 12. But education ministry figures showed that only 13,500 children under 15 years from these three countries were attending Thai schools. Children under 15 are not allowed to work under Thai law.
The report recommended that the Thai government work toward ensuring all children born in Thailand receive birth certificates. Thailand's education ministry was also urged to work with schools to ensure that its policy of universal access to education was enforced and applied to all child migrants regardless of their parents' status. The report also said that some 500,000 Thai children aged under age 14 have one parent working overseas.
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