The question that typically arises worldwide is… Is child labor beneficial? Many sources state that those who begin work during childhood have yielded harmful effects in the long run; however multiple cultures around the world embrace child workers as active participants in the community. Even in the United States, children were able to hold jobs alongside adults until the early 20th century.
Today, children have the job to go to school and come home to complete their homework. They work to earn money independently around the age of fourteen. While this is beneficial in most cases, many children have their childhood and innocence taken away from them because of child labor. Child labor is primarily caused by extreme poverty. The practice of child labor is very common in poor countries, specifically Bangladesh. That is not to say that child workers in America don’t exist. Children often work on their family farms and restaurants. Yet, there is a difference between child labor and child work. Child work is not necessarily considered grueling work in which a child is responsible for earning income. Child labor, however, does require a child to earn income interferes with his or her normal development. Although child work in America does not seem as cruel as it is in Bangladesh, this does not mean it is not forced.
Bangladesh Child Labor:
In the case of Bangladesh, child labor has both pros and cons. Child labor in Bangladesh is identified as a child in the age group range from five to fourteen years old, who is working for money. “Although Bangladesh with her current population of 130 million accounts for about 2% of the world population, it is the home of 6.9 million working children that accounts for about 6% of the global labor population numbering around 120 million” (Masum, pg 233). Income is the key factor in determining if a child must work in Bangladesh. Without child labor, families would not be able to survive in normal circumstances. Child labor allows aid in family income, payment of school, family events and the economy through job placement. This, however, may be unsafe for a child.
Unfortunately, child labor causes children to work in harmful conditions, which may cause physical and psychological problems as well as, trafficking. “Most of the child labor engaged in hazardous activities belong to extremely poor and vulnerable households, who, in their bid to survive, are willing to take up any job irrespective of hazards associated with such jobs” (Masum, pg 242). In addition, children do not have time for proper education because their time is spent at work. They are treated as adults and never get to experience childhood. Child labor also contributes to children engaging in prostitution, stealing or begging, which leads them into premature aging, malnutrition, depression and drug dependency.
Child Labor in America:
In the case of America, child labor allows children to have advantages and disadvantages as well. Children are...