By: Muhammad Zain Zafar
Child labor is the exploitation of children in which children forcefully work part or full-time basis for their economic stability. Which impedes their ability to attend school regularly. This exploitation is mentally, physically, socially, or morally damaging.
This is hard to accept but child labor is real. Proximately 11% of children are engaged in child labor. Child labor is quite usual in developing countries like Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Africa, and Uzbekistan.
According to the International labor organization (ILO) 152 million children are subservient to child labor. The highest number of children aged 5 to 17 involved in child labor were to be found in Africa (72.1 million), followed by Asia and the Pacific (62 million), the Americas (10.7 million), Europe and Central Asia (5.5 million), and the Arab States (1.2 million). Around one-third of children aged 5 to 14 involved in child labor are far from the education system. 38 percent of children in hazardous work aged 5 to 14 and about two-thirds of those aged 15-17 work more than 43 hours per week.
The United Nations adopted the Convention on the Rights of the Child in 1990, which was later approved by 193 countries. Article 32 of the convention addressed child labor, as follows:
“Parties recognize the right of the child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be Hazardous or to interfere with the child’s education, or to be harmful to the child’s Health or physical, mental, spiritual, moral or social development.”
Under Article 1 of the 1990 Convention, a child is defined as “every human being below the age of eighteen years unless, under the law applicable to the child, a majority is attained earlier.” Article 28 Of this Convention requires States to, “make primary education compulsory and available free to all.”
195 countries are party to the Convention; only two nations have not approved the agreement, Somalia and the United States.
According to UNICEF, Pakistan has the world’s second-highest number of children who are out of education system. In Sindh Province only 60.6 percent children between the ages of 5 to 14 are school going with 11.6 percent children managing their education with work. The small hands which should be carrying books and toys are lifting heavy loads and doing hazardous work.
In Pakistan almost every dhaba has a “chotu”, every market has a “chotu” and every other house has a “choti” as house helper.
Already so many organizations and NGOs are giving awareness to eliminate this inhuman act towards children. But poverty is the major reason behind child labor due to which children have to work hard for their financial crisis.
The government should take strong actions and must be followed at any cost that imposes them for sending their children to school. Laws must be made to make sure poor families are financially supported so that their children get proper education. Through different organizations and NGOs parents should be guided about how their children’s education can change their future brightly. If anyone have found guilty, they have to pay huge fine and imprisoned will be imposed.
“Life of Little Ones Are Destroyed
When Child Labor Is Employed”