Child rights isolation
The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child had been ratified by more than 190 countries, making it the most widely accepted and adopted human rights treaty as of yet but despite that, these rights are all being brutally violated in every part of the world.
In this era, it is quite ‘normal’ for these children having their rights denied. There are millions of children suffering every week from these violations and there should be more measures taken on a broader scope and on a bigger scale to get justice to these children who do not deserve what’s coming to them.
These are a few of the child rights violation that need to be taken action against.
1. Child Marriage
A 2018 census fond out that 1 in 5 women marry as children. In India alone, 27% of the girls are married before their 18th birthday. The highest rate of child marriages is in Nigeria, where 76% of the women are being married off to before the age of 18 as if they are mere properties.
These problems occur mainly due to poverty issues where the family of the bride consider their daughters a burden and spend the last dime of their savings in order to see their daughter off and be ‘free’ of them, no longer having to ‘provide them’. Girls are forced to drop their education because ‘it didn’t matter anyway’. They are treated cruelly and are exposed to sexual, emotional, as well as physical violence that they aren’t prepared for and don’t deserve. They bear children earlier, being stuck with taking a care of a child while they are still technically in their childhood.
2. No Access to Education
At least 35 million children aged 6 - 14 years do not attend school. In India and many other countries, the deep-rooted norms of how the educated daughter will only benefit her marital family as well as the belief that girls shouldn’t work after marriage and children makes it very difficult for rural and many urban parents to believe that educating girl child is of any use. There are also problems like lack of usable washrooms, long distances from school, and early pregnancy that prevent the girl children from achieving education.
Literacy of a women is of as much importance, if not more, as the education of a man. Boys too suffer this fate but quite significantly lesser than the girls and the most prominent reason for illiteracy amongst men is poverty. Illiteracy is a parasite that will completely consume the country if correct actions are not taken at the right time.
3. Child Labour
The International Labour Organization (ILO) defines child labour as work that is mentally, physically, socially or morally dangerous and harmful to children; and interferes with their schooling by: depriving them of the opportunity to attend school; obliging them to leave school prematurely; or requiring them to attempt to combine school attendance with excessively long and heavy work.
According to Census 2011 data, there are 33 million child labourers between the ages of 5-18 years and 10.13 million between the ages of 5-14 years. These children are being denied their rights and are having their childhood stolen away from them as if it was never there to begin with, not to mention how their health is put at grave risk because of the chemicals they are exposed to in many cases. These children are not supposed to be employed; they are supposed to be empowered.
4. Child Trafficking
In definition, child trafficking is the action or practice of illegally procuring and relocating children for exploitation, typically for the purposes of forced labour, sexual exploitation, organ harvesting, or domestic slavery.
According to a report by the National Human Rights Commission of India, 40,000 children are abducted each year, leaving 11,000 untraced. Poverty, humanitarian crisis, lack of education, international adoption, lack of awareness, or insufficient legislation. These children are sold off and their lives are burnt away. This is not what they deserve.
These are just grains of sand on a beach. The pandemic has worsened all of these things by more than 100 times. There are many more violations that are done against children. AND they DON’T deserve this. They don’t deserve being trafficked, abused or discriminated. There are children suffering the worst fates and this needs to be rectified. Because this is not okay. Being married off is not okay. Making children a slave is not okay. Denying their rights to education is not okay. All of this is unjust and we need to do something about all these problems.