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Home » An Essay on the Issue of Child Labour [1000+ Words]

An Essay on the Issue of Child Labour [1000+ Words]

In this article we are going to discuss one of the most alarming issues of our society. In fact we will write an essay on this topic. i.e., An essay on the Issue of Child Labour. Child labour refers to any work done by a child, or in the manufacturing sector, where children younger than fourteen years of age perform work that is hazardous and often poorly paid. Children are commonly found in jobs like street hawking, working as domestic workers, agricultural workers and miners.

Some children opt to become child labourers because they need an income in order to help the family make ends meet while adult members seek employment opportunities that offer more security or better pay.

Child Labour is a much bigger issue which needs to be addressed more seriously not only on our part, but also the government. Because if what we are seeing is a glimpse of the future, it is not going to be good for our country.

An Essay on the Issue of Child Labour

An Essay on the Issue of Child Labour

Introduction

Child labour is one of the most pressing issues in today’s society. It is unjust, immoral and violates the human rights of children. It also disrupts their development, increase risk for injuries and illnesses, slows down their education, and deprive them from their childhood.

Child labour also undermines fundamental social values such as justice, fairness and democracy. The present day’s capitalist economy is based on the exploitation of labour. Low wages, a lack of long-term employment and hazardous working conditions create a need for children to be employed.

Child labour is the employment of children under 18 years of age in any work that deprives them from their liberty, health, education and leisure. Child labourers perform street trading, picking up garbage, small shops, factories and hotels.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child of 1990 has recognized that children are entitled to a right to be free from any form of exploitation or abuse. It states that working is an activity that deprives children of their rights to rest, leisure, education and protection.

Effects of child labour on child’s Mental and Physical Health

Work induces stress and has a negative effect on mental health of a child. It is a common phenomenon that children working in hazardous occupational settings are likely to experience acute stress, anxiety, and anxiety-related symptoms.

In developing countries, children are forced to work in hazardous jobs. Working at a young age can cause serious physical and mental health problems (i.e. Musculoskeletal disorder, Poor lung function, Eye/hand coordination impairment).

For example, child workers who carry heavy loads in their heads or on their small shoulders have a higher risk of developing back and spine injuries. Child working in factories are more likely to suffer chronic bronchitis and chest infections.

Work hinders the child’s intellectual development. In addition, child labour affects the individual’s learning behaviour, which in turn is associated with a higher risk of mental illness.

Children who work are less likely to perform well in school and have a lower self-esteem than their peers who are not forced to work early on. Children may also develop severe mood disorders such as depression and anxiety. Work can disrupt their sleep patterns and cause them to suffer from fatigue and exhaustion.

Role of Human Rights on the Issue of Child Labour

Child labour is an abuse of human rights. It is severely opposed by international bodies such as ILO and UNICEF. Under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, adopted by the General Assembly in 1966, state parties are required to take all appropriate measures to ensure children’s right to education. In fact free compulsory education should be provided until the age of 14.

Sixty-three states have ratified this treaty so far. Under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which consists of 54 articles and is legally binding to all countries that have ratified it, governments should:

These international bodies have also called for strict laws to be imposed against those who employ children. Any person who employ a child below the age of 15 years shall be liable to a fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or both. Moreover, employers who have employed children are liable to pay compensation.

International laws and human rights have been effective in protecting children from employment. For instance in Mauritius, the Employment Act was amended to provide that adults aged 15 years or older be permitted to work for 70 hours a week and also work on Sundays. This act gives protection against child labour and exploitation of any kind.

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Issue of Child Labour in India

It is widely recognised that child labour is a major obstacle to eradicating poverty and promoting economic growth. The country has traditionally been a highly labour-intensive economy. Children have been engaged in almost all sectors of the economy, especially agriculture, small scale industries and domestic services.

Today, the Child Labour Policy holds that all children below the age of 15 shall not be allowed to take part in any form of employment. It also forbids children from engaging in hazardous occupations or mines and factories. Children below the age of 14 cannot be employed for 7-hour a day or 10-hour a day. Children between the ages of 14 and 18 cannot be employed for more than 10 hours a day.

The age of marriage also has been raised to 18 years. This is another step to protect children from child labour. Government has also taken initiatives such as providing facilities to children so that they are not exploited by employers and demeaning work such as manual scavenging and domestic work etc.

Solution to the Issue of Child Labour

There is an urgent need to introduce a comprehensive approach to eradicating child labour and exploitation. One effective way to curb this social evil is by encouraging people to respect the fundamental rights of children that are enshrined in international conventions.

It should be made clear that any form of exploitation or abuse of children is completely contrary to the basic human right. Any person who employs a child should be punished in accordance with laws. This will help to create a sense of responsibility among people.

In many countries, efforts are being made by governments to combat exploitation of children by imposing strict laws against employers. It is essential to pressure governments to adopt measures that will protect children and punish those who are responsible for the suffering of children.

Child Labour Essay Conclusion

Child labour is an important issue that should be addressed immediately. It must be stopped and those responsible for inflicting this suffering on children must be punished. Several conventions have been ratified by countries and international bodies such as ILO, UNICEF and others are calling for strict laws to be imposed against those who employ children.

Governments should also provide facilities to children so that they are not exploited by employers and demeaning work such as manual scavenging, domestic work etc. There is an urgent need to introduce a comprehensive approach to eradicating child labour and exploitation. It should be made clear that any form of exploitation or abuse of children is completely contrary to the fundamental human right.

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