Introduction: Child labour is an international and widely spoken issue of recent years. Child labour is considered a matter of disgrace for a nation. Child labour is antagonistic to humanity. It demolishes future generations.
What Child labour is: When the children of the age of 5-14 years are employed to work for pay or profit, or without pay in a family, enterprise or organization, it is called child labour. A child under 17 years should not be employed.
Causes: There are certain, causes of child labour. Poverty is the root cause. As poor people can hardly maintain their family and educate their children, the education of the children is stopped at an early age and they are forced to do various manual labour to support their family. Exploitation, deprivation arid lack of good monitoring are another causes of child labour.
Children employed in toilsome work: These children work in shops, hotel and restaurants. They are also found to carry brick and other building materials from one place to another. They are seen to crash brick. Even some are found to work, as street-hawkers, rickshaw-pullers, and car cleaners. They work in small factories. sometimes they polish boots, sell ‘chanachurs’, badam, etc. Some work as porters. These works are very toilsome for the children.
Effects: Child labour destroys the sweet period of childhood and children face the hard realities of life. Whenever they are employed, they are deprived of proper care, food, medical treatment. and basic human rights. Children work for longer hours but they are not given due wages. Sometimes, they have to work in an unhealthy atmosphere. It hampers their education as well as their physical and mental development.
Child labour around the gold: Child labour was first recognised as a social problem in Great Britain. In the USA, it was acknowledged as a problem after the civil war. Although most European nations had child labour.
Child laBour in Bangladesh: Child labour is rapidly growing in Bangladesh. Approximately 19% of the total child population of Bangladesh works as child labour. The proportion is much higher in case of boys (22%) than in of girls (16%). A dense population, limited resources, poverty etc, have contributed to the increasing, child labour in Bangladesh.
Child labour is a curse of modern society: Labour is a matter of dignity. But child labour is considered a matter of disgrace for a nation. Children are the future of a nation. If childhood is wasted in manual labour, they will not be able to lead the nation in future. Child labour is a curse of modern civilization. That is why child labour is called modern slavery.
Prevention: Govt. and NGOs should work together to root out this evil from society. Child labour should be stopped by law. Poverty alleviation programme must be strengthened. The Govt. must ensure that children do not drop out from schools. After all mass awareness against child labour should be raised amongst all people.
Conclusion: The children of today are the future of a country. So, all of us must strive to ensure a peaceful, carefree and secured world for-our children.