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Child Labour (Essay Sample)


Discussing the effects of child labour.


Child Labor
Child Labor
Child labor is emerging as one of the alarming social issues throughout the world. It is approximated that more than 260 million children are working worldwide. In addition, more than a half of these children work under unconducive working environment. It is further argued that about one million children are trafficked each year, hence the ever increasing number of child labor (World Trade Organization, 2003). There is no single definite definition of what child labor is, as various scholars have come up with different descriptions. However, it is generally defined as any work or activity which dispossesses children of their childhood. Child labor has been associated with various issues most importantly inadequate education opportunities, poverty, a range of health risks, and gender inequality.
Perhaps, one of the most significant effects of child labor is interruption of the normal physical, mental and social development of a child. From a psychological point of view, it is largely argued that child labor negatively impacts the physical, mental and social development of children. Unlike adults, children lack the physical ability to effectively handle their tasks at their working environment. Therefore, they are easily injured physically as compared to the adults (Gamble, A2013). In fact, majority of the employed children end up losing fundamental organs in the course of their work, some of which condemn them to become handicaps for the rest of their life. Besides, as a result of physically strenuous activities, coupled with poor nutrition, stunted growth is likely to occur among employed children. It is has also been noted that working in depressing working environment contributes to emotional abuse among the children. Furthermore, such children endure challenges in developing their social life as they lack enough time to interact with their peers. Hence, there is a high possibility of compromising their self-esteem, something that affects them for their entire life (Balagamwala, 2003).
The other effect of child labor is interruption of a child’s education and cognitive development. It is unlikely that employed children would manage to effectively amalgamate working with schooling. Thus, a large number of the employed children, more especially those on the full-time basis, have poor education foundation. Consequently, such children are denied a conducive environment to develop cognitive skills. It is also worth pointing out that even those who attend school while working on part-time, their performance in school is much lower than those who are not employed at all (U.S. Department of Labor, 1998).
Child labor contributes to unskilled badly paid employment opportunities. Undoubtedly, from a short-term perspective, child labor is a source of income for most families, and perhaps this is one of the reasons why child labor has been increasing on an increasing rate throughout the world. However, from a long-term point of view, child labor is one of the leading factors that have contributed to high levels of poverty in the world. This is because it deprives children of the opportunity of developing skills that would allow them to effectively compete in well paying job opportunities (Gamble, A2013). In fact, employed children have little chances of participating in white collar jobs, as a result of a poor education background. It is evident that child laborers only grow to become low-wage-earning adults. As a result, their offspring are also likely to join child labor in the attempt to augment the income of the family. Consequently, child labor and poverty is transmitted f...
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