Child Labor (Follow-up Post)


Continuing from my last week post...

I realize that my thoughts on my last post is illegal in all countries. But most of the time some of the children still have to work anyway, and they ended up working in a very unpleasant working environment out in the street or dumpster.

In response to my post I received this link from a mentor.    Asia Inspection White Paper on Slavery 

I quote one of the highlights from the above link :

“Today, the number of people enslaved worldwide is estimated to be anywhere between 21 and 36 million, 26% of which are children under the age of 18 “

And there are also a post from our own AMC blog (for AMC Blog post click here)  that states: 

The link in this post states:

“Children should be in school. Not working. They should be learning skills in school that give them opportunities for choice throughout their later life. Working in garment factory at age 13, 14, 15 effectively enslaves an economic class to poverty and low wages their entire life.”

From the 2 two quoted links above you might see there are plenty underage worker that have to works in early age without even having the chances to get proper education for their future.

Different from my own personal case, which occurred back when I was only helping out my family business, and I still had good opportunities to go to school.  I  have been able to enjoy my childhood.  This is unfortunately not the case for all children.  

Obviously its not a simple case. I wonder if it would be possible for all those companies that employ underage workers, if they could also undertake to fund the young workers' social contributions such as taking on responsibility for their education, such as scholarships. Additionally needed would be exemptions on their working hours. 

There are some companies that give scholarship to students who just complete high-school, followed by some provisions that the person is required to work several years in that company after they finish their studies. 

Most companies probably hire underage workers without any considerations of the underage workers' future.

However,  there also are some companies that have high sense of social responsibility. And are attracted by becoming vendor for fashion  brands in a socially correct way. This might increase customer awareness to different level. They will not thought “oh this brands is sweat shop brands”. They will start to think of the social responsibilities that comes with being associated with that brand.

Child Labor

We all know child labor and sweat shop is one of the main issue in any Industry. In garment itself nobe of the well known brand allows any of their subcontractor to have underage worker or paying lower than the minimum wages.

For a well developed country they absolutely have no problem for these type of things. But how about under developing countries where most of their citizen still live in poverty. You can see on the street may children selling stuffs in red lights or even beg for money. The picture in my blog today i taken from an article 5 days ago where this young boy have to sell donuts on street side to help his parents.

Garments is one of the industries that actually can absorbs a lot of human resources. 

Back to my own personal stories, my families running some small home garment industry since my great grandfather. Since i was small, we are all helping the family business. Officially back then i can not sew. Me and my brother often help with the packing or carrying stuff. We even play race who can do faster, we were having fun and we proud we can do what adults do. Officially we are not getting paid for this, but doesn't that makes me and my brother categorize as child labor or not?

Not long ago i found this small home industry, garment officially. The owner actually hired an entire family to work in their facilities. They build several homes around the facilities so their workers and family can stay there. In the morning the parents will start with cutting and sewing, by the afternoon when their chilren finish school, they come to help their parents. They do packing and finishing while chatting with their fellow friends. These are actually much more decents rather than seeing them out in the street trying to earn money.

They really enjoying what they do and they get to enjoy family time and working at the same time. It is one of the most beautiful view i ever see. I wish this can be applied in a larger industries... We might able to see more families have more decent life...

But thats just my cup of tea...