Tribal children in the African rainforests have been paid in alcohol and glue to sniff, in return for manual work.
A new Survival International report has found that market traders in the Republic of Congo ply children from the Bayaka tribe with glue, in exchange for cleaning out latrines – a basic toilet.
In Cameroon Baka tribespeople, who’ve often been illegally evicted from their forest homes, are often paid in glasses of moonshine (home-brewed alcohol) in exchange for manual labour.
The report reads:
Dispossessed tribal people often take to drugs, usually the cheapest and most easily available such as alcohol and gas. Babies are born with fetal alcohol syndrome, children get little care from addicted parents, teenagers follow suit. The cycle cannot be broken by merely treating symptoms: entire societies fall apart.
Baka from Cameroon, illegally evicted in the name of conservation, often end up receiving alcohol as wages. The going rate for half a day is five glasses of moonshine.
Among Innu youth, gas sniffing is a chronic problem. It causes convulsions and permanent damage to the kidneys, eyes, liver, bone marrow and heart…”