What Is Child Slavery?
While child slavery has been in the dark for ages, unknown to many people, about five million children have been trapped in the slavery circle, including the developed countries such as the United Kingdom.
Child slavery is not necessarily child labor, but it has immense degrees of harshness. Child labor may be voluntary, but it tags negative consequences such as interrupting normal growth and development and even education. On the other hand, child slavery is termed when a person derives benefits from a minor providing forced labor.
Child slavery entails of:
- Forced and early marriages.
- Children used as tools for drug trafficking, violence, commercial sex or adult videos, forced begging and crime, all to benefit another individual.
- Children pressured into taking part in armed conflict.
- Forced and heavy child labor in areas such as industries, farms, domestic households, construction, and clubs.
Reasons Why Children Work
Most children who fall into this working-class category are mainly caught up with it due to poverty. They further fall as the most preferred compared to adults because they are easily monitored and controlled and are less placed to voice their concerns on low wages and more favorable working conditions. Children who are less fortunate, are less likely to value education because the cost of education can be burdensome or inaccessible.
Extended poverty stretched over generations is often caused by child labor. Most of these children drop out of school and grow up to join the unskilled category of working adults who remain trapped in underpaid jobs, perpetuating poverty.
Child Labor, Child Work and Child Slavery
Most people get confused by these terms mentioned above hence we will discuss them below.
Child work: Work is not entirely harmful to a child’s growth since some types of work help children learn and acquire essential skills making them better individuals. In some cases, some of these pieces of work contribute to the income of their households.
Child labor: This is not slavery, but it can interrupt a child’s healthy growth and education if continued. In most cases, children will offer child labor while under the care of their guardians.
The Worst form of child labor: “Hazardous work” has been termed to be the worst form of child labor. It takes a toll on a child’s health and growth and in many cases consequences are irreversible. This may occur if the work description exposes children to toxic substances or heavy machinery and in the worst scenarios can cause death.
Child slavery: This is forced labor on a child, and the benefits are transferred to another person in the end.
Child trafficking: It entails on transporting and engaging people for end use exploitation of their human resource power. Child trafficking has been considered the least strenuous since children do not revolt against rules forcefully.
Child marriage: It occurs when a child is married off involuntarily, mistreated within the borders of the marriage and is forced to stay contrary to their wish. A person below the age of 18 is considered a child and if married off that is already child slavery.
Children in armed conflicts: These include child soldiers who become engaged in conflicts that may eventually tamper their mentalities. Moreover, children forced to participate in any other militia duties such as marriages with military members and transporters are categorized in this section.
Facts About Child Slavery
There is an estimated ten million number of children from all over the globe involved in trafficking, armed conflicts, slavery, commercial sex and adult services, forced labor, and other inhumane activities.
About 151.6 million are said to be indulged in child labor.
114 million child laborers are not even 14 years of age.
72 million children struggle to survive working under hazardous environments that affect their health and safety negatively.
Investigations by UNICEF suggest that 300,000 children provide services in the military some even below ten years old.