Child labour: a curse on our society

Saturday 26 November 2016
We know that child labour involves exploitation of children, but it is vital to understand how it is not only child victims but how society suffers when it is implemented. This damage isn’t one which can be sidelined and overlooked by those who are only concerned with their own selfish interests – it affects every single individual, immediately as well as the long term.
 
Here’s why we need to put an end to this evil practice.

We know that child labour involves exploitation of children, but it is vital to understand how it is not only child victims but how society suffers when it is implemented. This damage isn’t one which can be sidelined and overlooked by those who are only concerned with their own selfish interests – it affects every single individual, immediately as well as the long term.
 
Here’s why we need to put an end to this evil practice.
 
1. Health damage
Victims of child labour usually suffer from depression and anxiety, pushing them to destructive habits like smoking, alcoholism or drug abuse.

Formative environments of abuse also trigger a lifetime of low self-esteem, depression, and relationship difficulties. Psychological and emotional conditions such as panic disorder, dissociative disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, depression, anger, posttraumatic stress disorder, and reactive attachment disorder have also been noted in children who have grown up in abusive conditions.
 
2. Employment
At the moment, India has 60 million child labourers. http://www.friendsofsbt.org/statistics/
Imagine the losses India’s economy faces when successive generations of children attempt to attend the formal workforce. Across industries, this means that the potential talent of children who have been deprived of primary and secondary education will be lost. Instead, they will only be capable of manual and menial labour, in skills like serving tea, cleaning tables and working with hazardous chemicals. Despite aggressive attempts to end child labour, India has still not been able to achieve a blanket ban on the practice.
 
3. Acceptance of child labour
Today, child labour exists in many invisible forms. You probably ignore everyday incidents of child labour around you, such as the children working as hawkers, or minors used as servants for work like cooking, cleaning utensils and sweeping floors. Even our festive fireworks are made using child labour.
 
Silently ignoring child labour is just giving approval to this crime, making it acceptable to treat children as utilities and ‘beasts of burden’. In the long run, you are engineering an economy to rely on the dispensability of desperate children, not the energy of eager and productive men and women. That is dangerous for a country’s GDP, and also unacceptable internationally considering the aggressive initiatives the United Nations has taken to end child labour in all forms.
 
Why you must support an NGO in tackling child labour
Globally renowned child rights NGO Save The Children's is working to make child trafficking "socially and culturally unacceptable”. and it has successfully withdrawn 50,000 child domestic workers from domestic help, and just year rescued 9337 children from the clutches of child labour in India.  The NGO fights all forms of child labour via 65 projects across 18 Indian states. Child labour survivors are led to rehabilitation and education, and over 1.5 lakh children have been given access to access to holistic education. The NGO has also established a long-lasting dialogue with communities across India, as well as state and national level governance to address child labour, abuse, corporal punishment, trafficking, and child rights violation.
 
Conclusion
Now that you have gotten a glimpse of the immediate threat that child labour poses, you should consider how you can swiftly contribute to ending it. The easiest and most efficient way to the fight against child labour is to donate online, to an NGO like Save the Children. Your donations will fuel India's finest child rights activism, through programmes to uplift, empower and rescue children. Save the Children also works with supportive human rights organisations, activists, and volunteers who will ensure that every rupee you donate goes towards making a difference in every child's life.