Child labor has been a critical issue from time immemorial. Indeed, there is no time when it has been absorbed as a norm. Companies and individuals perpetuating the vice have been facing legal and ethical issues, and the impacts have been far-reaching. Reputation has been getting damaged among other problems. In spite of the efforts to eliminate child labor, it has emerged as an undeniable part of society. Many people have often been confusing it with child work hence the need to shed more light on it. Its perceptions have also been changing from one cultural context to the other.
Many groups in society have been urging restrictions on child labor. In some occasions, some have claimed that no one below 16 years should work in manufacturing, mining, and agricultural industries. This urge is highly sensitive due to the tiring activities that companies give their workers. Exposure to harm is also high, and the situation is more severe if it involves children. Other segments have claimed that working hours is an issue too; thus, those below 18 years should have limited working hours. For those below 21 years, the proposed requirement is ensuring that they are away from pesticides. All these suggestions are valid since their objective is common- protecting the interest of young people while avoiding abuse.
As an undeniable part of past and present day's living, it is unfortunate that some people often confuse child labor with child work. Child labor is oppressive and exposes the kids to dangerous jobs. Usually, it happens against their consent. If that is not the case, the abusers trick them to do some activities for payments that do not match the labor they offer. On the other hand, child work is giving the children some roles so that they can improve and become productive members of the community. For instance, sending them somewhere gives them a feeling of responsibility.
Child labor has been attracting criticism from many social segments due to its adverse nature. As people propose the age limits of workers and other requirements such as limiting their working hours, they always have one desire- protecting people from abuse. When it comes to children, they cannot decide rationally. As such, they are prone to exploitation either by choice or coercion. Legal and ethical view of the issue depicts that it should never happen, and it is justified to criticize and expose its perpetrators. If possible, there should be severe punishment.
One thing that makes child labor morally wrong and highly condemned is the way it affects the child adversely. Child labor deprives the child the education and matching quality required to succeed in life (Mir, 2019). As mentioned in case 5, restrictions to work under certain conditions are put since the consequences are known. Such exposures will deprive the child his/her fundamental rights of education and health. When children lack the necessary education basis, they grow not only being abused but also end up being unproductive members of society.
Apart from depriving children education, child labor is abusive in the sense that it adversely impacts the social development of the child. A critically essential component of social development is how a child interacts with others. The child's healthy growth process should be plenty of social activities and anything that impedes the same is immoral. In agreement with Gamble (2011), child labor ensures that the children spend a lot of time under challenging activities instead of joining his/her peers in school or playing. In the end, they fail to learn how to interact appropriately hence becoming antisocial.
From case 5, the underage children are also under high risk of adverse social development. The adolescents who work in manufacturing, mining, and construction industries are at high risk of mental health problems. According to Gamble (2011), those who work over 20 hours per week are highly exposed to problematic social behaviors such as drug abuse and aggression. More so, they are poor performers in school. Above all, they are the ones likely to drop out of school or get low-quality education. The impacts are far-reaching; this affirms the immoral aspect of child labor hence the need for all possible interventions to ensure children are safe.
Restrictions are one way of ensuring that children can get adequate time with their peers and family members. Unfortunately, it might be their family members compelling them to take up some roles due to family problems. In this end, underage workers need to be helped to develop positive personal relations so that they can thrive and feel confident at all times. As the children advance in age while working, it reaches a time when they realize that they are not in the right place. Due to interaction with others and as they get information from the media, they grasp the consequences of what are doing and what they might be missing. Consequently, their esteem lowers and become likely victims of emotional problems as well.
It is worth mentioning that health risks are high irrespective of one's age. Even though it is a requirement for the ones below 21 years not to contact pesticides, dangerous working conditions also involve physical harm. An apparent case with child labor is that the employers want high output irrespective of the process involved. Accordingly, the workers often go through continuous periods of intense work. In some instances, it is possible for them to take up some roles that are too advanced for them.
There is no time that child labor will become a moral thing. Indeed, it hampers not only socio-emotional development but also the physical aspects. According to Gamble (2011), exposing a child to laborious activities hinders physical growth; such kids are smaller than their peers since they don't adequate time to play or grow naturally. Under the same conditions, they aren't immune to respiratory illnesses due to frequent exposure to chemicals that impede physical and cognitive development. Since poor eating habits are part of their everyday life, they can also get malnourished.
Children are a critical segment of the populace. When empowered, there is a guarantee that future generations will be stronger and societies will develop according to the conventional metrics. Children have several rights which child labor violates. Among many, the right to education is fundamental. Secondly, they need quality health and protection from abuse. When they start working at the wrong time, their future isn't secured. In the end, they become not only unproductive but also likely to extend a thread of hopeless generations due to reduced capacity.
Child labor is a form of abuse that children require maximum protection. In most manufacturing, construction, and mining industries, plenty of adults can work in the same positions that they fix the underage. Considering that unemployment rates are very high worldwide, it is right assuming that these kinds of employers engage in deliberate actions that harm the victims. At such a point, it is crucial to come up with protective approaches that can keep children out of the way of harm. Children need to grow at the right speed without denial of health, social, or educational needs.
Child abusers often take advantage of their miserable situation. According to Kale (2019), one of the reasons that make children to become easy targets of their exploiters is poverty and overpopulation. In some countries, particularly the developing ones, low-income families tend to have many children. Since their economic power isn't supportive of the entire family's livelihood, the situation compels young children to take up any job. In one way, they help to fix the financial burden that stems from poverty and having a large family. On the other hand, most of their employers are aware of their needs. Hence, they exploit them since their options are too limited.
Even though children require quality education, a majority of the ones highly abused come from families whose members are not educated or didn't get a quality education. In agreement with Kale (2019), a lot of illiterate people are ignorant and tend to think irrationally about their needs. Therefore, when a chance for their children to take up manual jobs becomes available, they do not evaluate the future consequences. They readily offer them so that they can support their families. Being poor also hinders the families from providing their children quality education since they do not understand its necessity. In the end, the child becomes helpless despite his/her interest in school and quality life.
In many companies where child labor is rampant, the owners prefer children since they can cut back production costs. According to Kale (2019), children are usually paid lower compared to the adults, and it is also possible to force them to work a lot more. Due to their lack of exposure, their chances of revolting are low; they can't form unions since they are not aware of labor laws and workers' rights. In such a case, the factories benefit from many ends, and the only thing that can rescue them is outside help.
Diversity of Interests
In everyday working situations, there is a need for recognizing diversity and inclusivity. One way of doing so is incorporating different ages in the employment opportunities available in organizations. Gender factor also comes in as well as ethnicity and religious inclination among others. In spite of the desire to ensure fairness and balance, abusing people along any line is profoundly immoral. There have to be some limits, and underage children must never work in any organization regardless of their needs.
Many countries have implemented different laws that criminalize child labor. Regrettably, many companies do not abide by their requirements. The companies are also influential, and the owners can have a hand in the government's running. This connection leads to further exploitation of the children. The other concern is apathy from the government and society. In many areas in developed and developing countries, people tend to overlook this issue if it doesn't affect them directly. Doing so leads to an increase in child workers hence the need for more sensitization on what is happening, likely to happen, and its impacts.
Apart from more awareness and government intervention, laws that criminalize child labor must be profoundly punishing. For instance, Apple has a safeguard approach that it uses to protect and punish child labor. According to Wakefield (2016), Apple conducts regular and rigorous audits on its supply chain to investigate chances of child abuse. If any supplier is found to be hiring underage workers, several interventions ensure that such issues do not happen anymore. The supplier must meet the expenses of the worker's safe return home. Additionally, the abusers must finance the abused worker's education and continue to pay her wages. Above all, the supplier should offer the worker a job after completing school.
At this point, the central takeaway is that governments, communities, workers, and companies must acknowledge that child labor is immoral. Regarding that, there should be policies that restrict the employment of underage workers while punishing the offenders severely. Companies like companies have integrated a "zero tolerance policy" towards child labor which should be the case with its competitors and others. As Wakefield (2016) further explains, Sony works with its supplier to address any human rights conditions and issues involving labor conditions in its production sites. With companies recognizing the need to avoid child labor, it will be possible to eradicate the immoral behavior once and for all.
Children need protection due to their fragile nature. They can...
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