Child Labor in Modern Developing Countries

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The thriving American economy is well known for its capitalistic ideals and manufacturing efficiency that it has implemented in other countries. However, the implementation of industries worldwide affects children due to an increase of exploitive and inhumane labor. Outlined by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, “Child labor is any work done by a child that may be harmful to their physical, emotional, intellectual and social development (Joanna).”

Child labor was not abandoned expeditiously in the United States and is still prominent in the present-day economy as leading edge runners of a multitude of industries are using children to manufacture products at extremely low prices. In the twenty-first century, the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) approximates that there are 250 million children engaged in labor, 125 million employed in full-time hazardous jobs, 73 million of which are under the age of 10 years old (Rights: Child Labour a ‘Necessary Evil’).

The climactic opportunity that the employer offers the family of the child working is what is often used to counter the adversaries of this controversial topic; if there are no educational possibilities, should the child be able to legally work for the money to economically support their family? The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 passed by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, landmarking social and economic justice, called for the amelioration of “youth employment standards affecting employees in the private sector and in Federal, State, and local governments (‘Wages and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)’ ).”

In accordance with protecting children, the Tariff Act of 1630, the importation of manufactured goods by children and/or slaves is inhabited. Incongruously, there are currently firm ways of recording conformity to the law (“U.S. Import Laws and Goods Made by Child Labor or Slaves Overseas”). Companies with large stakes in the economy have found ways to override the current system to produce goods for larger profits.

Overall, an analysis through the economic, ethical, and legal angles show that child labor is a necessary part of the U.S economy. Future regulations will ultimately assist the government in minimizing the health risks of workers all the while maximizing the economies present without forcing children into the workforce.

In a small carpet factory in Asia, children as young as five were found to work from 6 in the morning until 7 at night for less than 20 cents a day. A single sixty dollar shirt is sold that child’s day’s earning (Children Pay High Price for Cheap Labour). Children are employed with a propensity for aiding their families, generally. In the Journal of Economic Perspectives, Chairman of the University of Chicago Department of Economics and recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1979, T.W. Schultz is highlighted for his considerations of children in terms of their families welfare development problems when assessing the factors for educational opportunities in place of labor (Edmonds, Eric V, and Nina Pavcnik).

Child labor seemingly declines while there are improvements in household living standards. As the welfare of the family increases, their economic stability is directly dependent. In Choices: The Magazine of Food, Farm & Resource Issues, Evidence stemming from T.W Schultz research on trade liberalization in accordance with children welfare, shows that despite rising employment opportunities for children, there are declines in child labor as the family incomes rise with trade liberalization (Beneke, Raymond R).

The lack of impactful local institutions such as the presence of ineffective or expensive schools associated with poverty may leave children with little astute opportunities other than manufacturing work. Therefore, poverty affects child labor as it acts as an economic motivator that brings companies a workforce that is in need of work and willing to commit to long, laborious hours.

Globalization is a country’s growing influence that constitutes an international presence. Globalization often offers augmentation of the availability of jobs to poor households of in that of developing countries. Additionally, it connects to child labor due to the fact that it proliferates the impact of rich countries in the domestic systems of developing third-world countries. Eric V. Edmonds, Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College asserts that the United States economy benefits from the international presence of various companies due to the “inflows of foreign investment or increases in the value of a developing country’s export products.

Many of today’s developing countries have a comparative advantage in agriculture, and integration into international markets may increase the price of the export product to international levels. Thus, trade liberalization may increase employment and wages in these agricultural export sectors. (Edmonds, Eric V.).” The changes that surface once a company enforce themselves upon a country of different demographics, there is an increase in child labor that stems from globalization.

Strengthening earning opportunities increases the demand for labor, hence wages paid to children. Diffusely, the increased earning predicaments offered to parents may change the types of work that are performed by parents. Children may be forced to take over some of the activities usually performed by the adults within their household.

Cite this paper

Child Labor in Modern Developing Countries. (2021, Jun 22). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/child-labor-in-modern-developing-countries/

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