Who is Accountable for Child Labor?


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It seems crazy that child labor is still a problem around the world but when you really think about it, many children work because they feel like they have to. Some governments, like in Uzbekistan require child labor to harvest cotton and other countries are so impoverished that families feel there is no choice but to have children add to the family income. The problem is that child labor actually perpetuates poverty and violates basic human rights. Unfortunately, these violations and poverty cycles are only made worse by Western economies that literally buy into the cheap items it produces. Continue reading

The Gap (Inc.) in Utilitarian Thinking


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Child labor seems to be an ever-existing problem. We hear of it in the news constantly and while the issue has been slowly decreasing, there is no sign of its eradication in the near future. One industry that seems to have the majority of issues is the textile and retail industries with massive amounts of outsourced production in third world countries. One such company is Gap, Inc. (Gap), which has been a popular source of casual and business clothing throughout the world, which, in addition to the Gap also includes branches like Old Navy and Banana Republic.   In 2007, Gap was accused of using child labor in their Indian factories and while it seemed clear that is was a misunderstanding and was strictly being addressed, it was not the first time Gap had been faced with children working on their clothing overseas.  Fortunately, we see that Gap realized their past mistakes in dealing with child labor and had put in place a new management style addressing such issues. The following review will provide a look into the story behind Gap’s influences and decisions, as well as analyze the ethical dilemmas that required redress. Continue reading

Made in India


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In figuring out what type of book I wanted to use for my second paper, I decided I needed a bit more background on my major focus: child labor. I plan to write about Gap, Inc and their extensive program against child labor. This idea is interesting to me considering children as young as four were discovered in their India factories. It seems to me that child labor then must be hard to detect and monitor, but I wanted to find out more. So I used our library catalogue to find a book about child labor, particularly in India. I also made sure the book was relatively recent, as I assume and hope that regulation has changed significantly in recent years.  Continue reading