Child labor refers to the employment of children in any work that deprives children of their childhood, interferes with their ability to attend regular school, and that is mentally, physically, socially or morally dangerous and harmful. Child labor has existed to varying extents, through most of history. During the 19th and early 20th centuries, many children aged 5–14 from poorer families still worked in Europe, the United States and various colonies of European powers.
These children mainly worked in agriculture, home-based assembly operations, factories, and mining and in services such as news boys. Some worked night shifts lasting 12 hours. With the rise of household income, availability of schools and passage of child labor laws, the incidence rates of child labor fell. However, the question arises that who is responsible for child labor? Law or parents. This is a very alarming situation of every country.
Child labor has increased everywhere which results in devastating situations. Law comes later but parents? Their child is always in front of their eyes. Parents are the care takers of their children. Household conditions force them to work, to earn. There are many types of child labor. Child labor should be controlled as well as inspected that what and who is responsible for it.
Child labor is a fatal disease at the core of the heart of our society. Child labor can be defined as the salaried occupations for children working outside their households; it also includes the imposition of domestic tasks on children which does not result in the generation of any income but is costing that child his/her education and the best time of their lives, that is their childhood.
Child Labor is an utter disgrace to humanity. As much common knowledge as this is, it is still sometimes argued that the attempts to eradicate child labor in Pakistan will lead to economic inefficiency and put further strain on the already crippled households. However, unknown of the fact that these attempts can also lead to the availability of skilled workforce in future. It will have positive long-term economic impacts that will out way the economic inefficiencies, and along with improving the socio-economic conditions of the households, in the long run, it will also lead to more mentally stable society.
“Sometimes more than food and water, I dream of getting my childhood back,” says Aziz a twelve years old (Child Labor Increases in Pakistan). Despite a significant decline in the child labor in rest of the world, Pakistan ranks number three in the world with the highest prevalence of child labor in the country. “12.5 million Children in Pakistan are involved in child labor according to a survey in 2012 by ILO” in 2011 just a shy of million, 900,000 to be exact are aged between 10-14, and it was a 40 percent increase from 2010 (Child Labor Increases In Pakistan).
With the world moving ahead it seems Pakistan is moving backward with regards to human development. But what are some of the reasons behind such a high prevalence of child labor in the country? Well to begin with it is the low income of the families that tempts them to put their children to work and not to educational institutions, as there is shockingly less number of state funded free educational institutions for such households.
So, therefore, while primary education may be compulsory in many cities, the quality of education is deplorable. We also see that adults with five to six years of schooling are functionally illiterate and immature, therefore, do not provide much justification for parents to give them education as they do not foresee immediate benefits.
Who is responsible for child labor; is it Law or parents? The attractive have an impact on of the new tutoring and different social offices would possibly be relied on to draw such guardians out of their terrible ways greater viably even than they can be pushed out by means of the fear of the law, as connected through the obligatory education leave mend and the industrial facility investigators.
From the kindergarten to the excursion school, and from the social contract golf equipment to the new stop houses, with their open library, stations and endeavor centers, the propensity of these instructive up-lifts is to protect the kid’s rest from inaction and terrible dependency to each gain and delight. What’s more, this solution of the authentic parental issue in the relaxation of their youngster’s guarantees to assist tackles the trouble of teen work.
Whereas according to law, The Constitution of Pakistan contains provisions for the financial and social well-being of the human beings and for the promotion of social justice. Fundamental rights with regard to the security of existence or liberty, prohibition of slavery and pressured labor, and the right to structure associations or unions, amongst others, are enshrined in the Constitution.
Article 11 of the Constitution of Islamic Republic of Pakistan ensures that “no child under the age of fourteen years shall be engaged in any factory or mine or any other hazardous employment. Realizing the crucial role of schooling in eradication of baby labor, Article 25-A used to be brought to the Constitution beneath the 18th Constitutional Amendment 2010, requiring the state to supply free and compulsory training to all adolescents of the age of 5 to sixteen years.
Education is the one of the most wonderful capacity of controlling and combating infant labor. Similarly, Article 37(e) of the Constitution requires the State to make provision for securing just and humane stipulations of work, making sure that children and girls are no longer employed in vocations unsuited to their age or sex.
Qamar Zaman Ch. Federal Secretary for Education and Training says: “Pakistan is faced with the highly serious challenge of out-of- school children. Children, mainly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, do not access schools due to various barriers including, distance to schools, non-availability of schools and lack of awareness. It is also true that schools fail to retain children, resulting in high dropout rates. The situation is, therefore, deeply worrying” (“Global Initiative on Out-Of-School Children”).
Another reason could be the inadequacy of law enforcement, as although laws to protect the children from this heinous curse of child labor exist. However, the violation of such laws is a routine practice in the country. A cross-sectional study related to the causes of child labor was conducted by National Center for Biotechnology Information in Malir district of Karachi, Pakistan, between April–July 2008.
Although infant labor has been considerably eliminated, it nonetheless poses a trouble in a few areas of the economy. Violations of the toddler labor laws proceed among economically impoverished migrant agricultural workers. Employers in the garment enterprise in New York City have grew to become to the teenagers of unlawful immigrants in an effort to compete with imports from low-wage nations. The latest liberalization of the federal government’s regulations regarding work achieved at home also will increase the possibility of illegal child labor.
Finally, notwithstanding the present legal guidelines limiting the wide variety of hours of work for this nevertheless attending school, some kids proceed to labor an excessive number of hours or preserve prohibited jobs. Effectiveness in enforcement varies from nation to state. Clearly, the United States has not but eradicated all the abuses and violations, but it has met the objective of the baby labor reformers and determined via regulation and general practice that teenagers shall not be full-time workers.
The study found out that children who were working mainly due to poverty were 82 % of the whole child labor in the country. 13 % children were being forced to work, and only 5% of them said that they were working because of their interest.
Having said that all, what the people of Pakistan are not realizing is what child labor is costing this country. Parents sending their children to work to increase their probability of survival may be categorized as behaving rationally, but what they fail to perceive are the long run negative implications of child labor. Since child labor rivals with school participation and proficiency, children sent to work are unable to gain human capital, missing the chance to upgrade their productivity and future income capacity.
It translates into a low income of future families and hence increases the probability of their offspring being sent to work at the similar age. In this way, poverty and child labor is passed on from generation to generation. Thus, in this way the society gets trapped into the vicious cycle of poverty as explained by the famous economist Thomas Malthus (“EBook | The CORE Project”).
So, eradicating child labor could have a long-term ‘transformative’ impact on the skills of the labor force of this country and would improve overall the standard of living and working environment within the country with increased production potential in the foreseeable future. It would, in turn, ensure an increase in GDP per capita of the population and would lead to decrease in our national dept.