Philosophy – Child Labour Essay Sample

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Point: Child Labour can be Stopped by Changing International Trade Policies.

-Remaining cases of child labour should be gently taken away following economic improvement

– It should be removed slowly and still provide support for families who need it

-CHILD LABOUR- unicef defines child labour as- ages 5-11 working one hour or more for wages, or twenty-eight hours at home; ages twelve to twenty-four working fourteen hours or more for wages, or twenty-eight hours at home; ages fifteen to seventeen working forty-three hours or more for wages, or at home.

– A working child does not have access to education and proper health care and nutrition and a supportive environment to grow as a productive member of society

-If nothing is done, it will become an endless cycle of poverty extending into the unknown future to consume future generations.

– “Shutting down a factory and pulling children out of their working environment may feel like the right thing to do but it actually does more harm than good”

– UNICEF and the International Center on Child Labor and Education (ICCLE) attribute poverty to be the leading cause of child labour.

-Sub-Saharan Africa and Asia as containing the highest amounts of child workers and the industrialized nations having the lowest amounts of child labourers.

– This indicates that many children around the world are more than likely economic contributors to their households— they are not working to save up for a car but for a loaf of bread, or basic subsistence. Under these circumstances it would be unsafe for the family and the child to lose their job, regardless of the moral imperative.

– Other leading factors in child labour include; poor or non-existent public education systems and societal beliefs that trap young girls at home and leave them illiterate and dependent upon the male members of the family.

– These contributors point to a poor economic infrastructure and the lack of the basic foundations that allow a society to develop.

-Until the early twentieth century it was not unusual to see children descending into the coal mines of Europe or behind the shop counters of North America.

-In India, children are employed in manufacturing, but more are found working in the agricultural sector or at home.

– The government has been actively passing laws to stop child labour since the 1930s. -In 2006, the Indian Parliament passed a set of laws which banned domestic work for children under the age of fourteen

– India still has approximately 11.2 million children engaged in full-time labour.

– As the economic conditions improve in India and the government ensures the equal distribution of wealth, there is no reason to suppose that child labour will continue.

– In 2005, Professor Sylvain Dessay and Stéphane Pallage of the University of Montreal published a study in the Economic Journal of Britain’s Royal Economic Society.

– findings concluded that the worldwide ban on child labour, which is supported by over 150 countries as well as the International Labour Organisation (ILO), was misguided precisely because it would deny important means of economic funding and inflict damage to a developing nation’s economy.

– the focus needs to be on tackling poverty to get at the root of the problem. – there are other forms of child labour such as prostitution, drug-trafficking, and children in the military. These problems should be addressed and stopped on a case by case basis.

“Without attacking poverty and the absence of proper education, an outright ban on child labour is as effective as trying to hold back the tide: you may succeed in a small area, but the tide is still coming in further down the shore.”

– A stronger display of sentiment would involve lobbying a Member of Parliament to work towards loosening trade restrictions and other financial incentives that will place developing countries on the path to prosperity. Only then will child labour truly be impacted in the long term.

Philosopher: Melanie Lambrick

Counterpoint: Preventing Child Labour Is a Global Responsibility.

– The practice of child labour is wrong because it ignores a child’s right to a safe and productive development. – All children have the right to grow up in safe conditions that are productive to their development. When a child’s safety and development are put at risk because of work, this right is denied. – should spur immediate action.

– This is often not the case because child labour is a necessary part of the global economy. In order to preserve the economic and political status quo, child labour is allowed to exist. – The elimination of child labour requires immediate global action, and implicates industrialized and developing nations alike. – If children are put into situations where they cannot learn and develop properly, they cannot become healthy adults. – detrimental to children as human beings, and detrimental to society, which is denied productive and healthy adults. – children have worked to support their families and communities. It is only recently in Western industrialized countries that childhood has been defined by leisure and education. – in Canada this kind of childhood acclimatizes children to societal expectations and norms. It allows children to grow into functioning adults who are able to contribute to society. – nowhere should this work impede a child’s ability to develop. – sex work, textile manufacturing, and heavy agriculture are not necessary to a child’s development.

– “The physical and psychological damage inflicted on child workers in these industries does not help society or culture in the long run.” – labour remains a reality for 218 million children worldwide. – One-fifth of the world’s population is connected to child labour. – Working as domestic servants, soldiers, sex workers, factory workers, agricultural labourers, mineworkers, drug vendors and throughout the informal sector, children constitute a major part of the global workforce. – Children they may work because they have no parents or their parents are unable to work, they are often involved in human trafficking and forced into slavery, some children work because there is nothing else to do, children are more desirable employees than adults because they will work for less money, refrain from forming unions, and because they have certain physical features such as small hands that allow them to do detail-oriented work such as carpet weaving. – places the burden of supporting the family on the child, and not the parents. – working children gain few skills that will prepare them for adulthood. – they may also become injured, making them less employable as adults and thus ensuring that the vicious cycle of exploitation continues. – Every day, 126 million children work in hazardous conditions and 22,000 children die in work-related accidents.

– they are often forced to transport heavy loads, use toxic chemicals, crawl into tiny spaces, engage in unprotected sexual activity, and use dangerous machinery not designed for their bodies. – “the contribution children make to the economy is not worth the cost of such work.” – child labour can negatively affect the physical, emotional and psychological development of children. – It has been proved that when children work long hours at grueling tasks, their physical development is stunted. If they work in isolated areas or on the street, children are denied acculturation to normal societal institutions, like the law and education. – Many children cannot attend school or enjoy leisurely activities because they do not have time or are too exhausted after working, thus allowing them to grow up without normal social interaction and development. – In developed countries like Canada, consumers benefit from goods cheaply produced by children.

– In emerging countries such as those found in Africa, Asia, or Latin America, economies benefit from taking advantage of children. -Although industrialized countries advocate the existence of human rights, they continue to import goods produced as a result of gross human rights violations. – In a global economy, countries must be able to produce goods as cheaply as possible to compete. As a result, they place their resources into trade and economic development rather than education or social programs. Even in Canada, child labour exists. Immigrant children, especially if they are in the country illegally, may look for unregulated work in the sex trade, domestic service, or the construction and manufacturing industries. This type of cheap labour helps keep industrialized countries competitive economically. In order to eliminate child labour, leaders everywhere have to recognize that the rights of children are more important than economic gain. Our Responsibility

Child labour is simply repulsive. Canada must recognize how terrible the situation really is and realize the role our country plays in its existence. By constantly buying consumer goods and demanding them at cheaper prices, Canadians support the conditions that create child labour. Moreover, by providing international incentives for cheap labour through trade agreements, Canada sends the message that money trumps human rights. In order to fight child labour, all industrialized countries must limit their economic gain and advocate for the rights of children. If they do not, any dialogue about human rights will be hypocritical. Conclusion

Child labour is a global issue and a global responsibility. It prevents growth and development and puts children at risk physically and psychologically. In the process, it denies children a healthy, well-adjusted future. Unfortunately, child labour has gone mostly unchecked worldwide due to its profitability. This is not only problematic for the children involved, but also for society at large because it ruins generations of workers. It is up to everyone to ensure that the economic factors that contribute to child labour are eliminated. This includes restraining capitalism’s profit motive in favour of human rights.

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