Child Labour cannot be merely understood through reading literatures and going through articles, surely one will be able to develop a basic meaning of the term but in order to grasp the full knowledge and information about the issue one will have to see it happening with our own eyes and this I got to know this through the work that I did in activity 2. In this activity, firstly I talked to five people who were not able to complete their education to ‘understand the education barrier’.
Q.1: What age did they start working?
Ans- Most of them were in their early teenage years to mid teenage years when they first started working.
Q.2: Did they go to school, if yes then till which class?
Ans- 4 of them did go to school they went till class 5, 6, 8 and 10 respectively while 1 did not go to school.
Q.3: Why did they stop going to school or why they didn’t they go?
Ans- Most of them stopped going to school due to the pressure of earning and sustaining their livelihood while others who did not go said that they used to not value education as much and believed that Government schools were too incompetent.
Q.4: How did not going to school affect their life? Do they believe that had they attended school they would have gotten more opportunities?
Ans- They said that sometimes it is difficult to understand things written on some forms and sheets and they have trouble in understanding all the schemes provided by the government. They said that they would have gotten better opportunities of job had they completed their education, yes they felt that had attended school they would not have to change such problems.
Q.5: Did they know about any government schemes or have to accessed any such schemes provided for the people below poverty line?
Ans- Some said that they were aware about some of the government schemes mainly due to the word of mouth and were able to access them albeit with little difficulty, while others only knew of such schemes but never accessed them.
So what idea I gathered from talking to them was that even though they were not able to complete their education but they were able to learn quite a few things from the experiences in life and they were able to gain some knowledge regarding general things in life. They were now quite aware of the importance of education and said that they wanted to see their children gain fame and name.
Afterwards I talked to 5 people who were able to access education and were privileged in order to ‘understand the perceptions of child labour and trafficking’.
Q.1: Were they aware about the laws against child labour?
Ans- Yes, they all were quite aware of the laws.
Q.2: In what kind of industries do you think child labour mainly happens?
Ans- Most of them believed that fireworks industries, bangle industries, dyeing, dhabas and small scale industries had intensive child labour.
Q.3: Do they consume products from industries that have child labour?
Ans- Yes, most were aware of either directly or indirectly consuming such products while a few said that no they did not use any products that was manufactured through child labour.
Q.4: Have they seen any child working/begging? What have they done?
Ans- Yes they all have seen it, they have given money, food and bought things in bulk to whatever they were selling.
Q.5: Have they seen/know people who hire children for domestic help?
Ans- Yes they have seen it.
Q.6: If the child’s family is in extreme poverty, is it ok for the child to work?
Ans- I got polarizing answers, 2 said yes while 3 said no.
So the idea that I gathered from talking to the people who were able to access proper education was that most of them were aware of all the things that has been going around regarding child labour but they themselves concluded that they should be doing more in whatever way they can.