Juvenile Employment Term Paper Outline
MBA 536: International Marketing
February 19, 2011
Child labor is the employment of children under an age determined by law or custom. This practice is considered exploitative by many countries and international organizations. Child labor was utilized to varying extents through most of history, but entered public dispute with the beginning of universal schooling, with changes in working conditions during industrialization, and with the emergence of the concepts of workers' and children's rights.
Child labor is very ...view middle of the document...
The United Nations and the International Labor Organization consider child labor exploitative, with the UN stipulating, in article 32 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child that:
...States 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.
In most countries, it is considered inappropriate or exploitative if a child below a certain age works, excluding household chores or schoolwork. An employer is often not allowed to hire a child below a certain age. This minimum age depends on the country. Child labor laws in the United States set the minimum age to work in an establishment without parents' consent and restrictions at age 16.
In the Industrial Revolution, children as young as four were employed in production factories with dangerous, and often fatal, working conditions. Based on this understanding of the use of children as labourers, it is now considered by wealthy countries to be a human rights violation, and is outlawed, while some poorer countries may allow or tolerate it.
In the 1990s every country in the world except for Somalia and the United States became a participant to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, or CRC. The CRC provides the strongest, most consistent international legal language prohibiting illegal child labour, however it does not make child labour illegal.
History in industrialised countries
In the West, during the Industrial Revolution, use of child labor was usual, often in factories. From the 17th century to the 19th century poor children were sent to workhouses where they worked under slave conditions. Charles Dickens famously wrote about this in his novels Oliver Twist and David Copperfield. In England and Scotland in 1788, about two-thirds of the workers in the new water-powered textile factories were children.During the industrial revolution child labor began to decline. Subsequently, largely due to the campaigning of Lord Shaftesbury, a series of Factory Acts were passed to restrict gradually the hours that children were allowed to work, and to improve safety.
Karl Marx argued that the Industrial Revolution increased hardship for children. Historian E. P. Thompson notes in The Making of the English Working Class that child labor was not new, and had been "an intrinsic part of the agricultural and industrial economy before 1780"; however he argued that "there was a drastic increase in the intensity of exploitation of child labour between 1780 and 1840, and every historian acquainted with the sources knows this is so. This was true in the mines, both in inefficient small-scale pits where the roadways were sometimes so narrow that children could not easily pass through them; where - as the coal...