Children Mining Gold

In Ghana children mine for gold in order to make some money. The way they do so is they spread the mercury by hand. Then tie it up with a rag and they come out with a gold and mercury mix, put it in the fire and then smoke it. Mercury is a liquid, shiny, substance. One of its abilities is that it can attract gold particles and form a gold-mercury mix pretty easily. If that mix is burned, the mercury turns to gas and leaves behind pure raw gold. It is cheap and easy to mine gold this way. As you know, it's even easy enough for small children to do. But mercury is also dangerous. It attacks people’s central nervous system and can cause lifelong disability, including brain damage, and even death. Mercury is particularly harmful to children because they are still growing. Ghana and the other countries which are major suppliers of gold need to stop children from working in these mines. They need to find a way to protect them from the damage mercury causes. How could this be achieved?

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