Chocolate produced by children is not only unethical it is a crime. These children do not receive the basic right to an education; instead they have a tortured life of abuse and daily beatings all so people can have a candy bar. Heresy’s Coca continues to purchase its cocoa from supply chains in West Africa despite the fact that these suppliers are accused of child labor, trafficking, and forced labor. The ethical issues here are the effects the forced labor has on children’s health, the conditions in which these children are forced to work, as well as how many hours of work are forced pond the children.
I will discuss how the treatment of these children is unethical and unsafe, and also that Heresy’s needs to take certain steps to clean up its supply chain in an effort stop the unethical treatment of chi lilied. Child labor has detrimental effects on children’s health. “Child labor is significantly and positively related to adolescent mortality, to a population’s nutrition level, and to the presence of infectious disease. ” (Roger, Ingratiate, Busters, Roasts, 2007) Working conditions that are safe and healthy for adults may not be safe and healthy for children because of hysterical differences.
Risks may be greater for children at various stages of development and may have long term effects. Factors that decrease the health, safety, and development Of children laborers are skeletal growth, ill development of organs and tissues, greater risk of hearing loss, greater need for food and rest, higher chemical absorption rates, and lower heat tolerance. (Child Labor Public, 2004) Moreover, children who are forced into child labor often work in hazardous conditions.
They are exposed to pesticides, they work with dangerous machinery and tools, they have a lack of clean water, and washing facilities, and toilets and they often must carry heavy loads that are twice their weight. What’s more, children are forced to work long hours. They are required to work anywhere from twelve to sixteen hour workdays in hazardous unsanitary conditions that are the cause of many accidents and deaths. Child laborers are subject to harmful health risks from working long hours in unhealthy conditions and this treatment of children is not only unethical it is wrong.
The illegal and unethical aspects of child labor need to be addressed on many levels. On an individual level the issues that need to be addressed are he children’s right to an education, health and safety. According to the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, over of child laborers are under the age of fourteen and work over twelve hours a day, filling and lifting fifty pound bags of beans. Most are underfed, mistreated, kept in filthy living conditions, and have never been to school.
While our children are guarded against playing with anything slightly pointed or sharp, the children of West Africa work day in and day out with heavy machetes, and no chance of medical care in the event of an accident. (Queerest, 2008) Children should to be forced into these conditions and should be allowed the basic right to an education as well as the basic right to live in a safe and healthy environment. On an organizational level the issues that need to be addressed are Heresy’s responsibility to the children and what they need to start doing to ensure that their products are not being supplied by children forced into child labor.
Hershey needs to practice more ethical behavior when it comes to choosing their suppliers. They need to implement checks and balances that ensure that children are not being used in the production of their products. On a societal level the issues that need to be addressed are the fact that child labor is illegal, the fact that it applies to a large number of people, and also that child labor elicits norm violations in our society. Our constitution strongly prohibits child labor by mandating that children receive a proper education and the right to live as children.
Moreover, it is a societal problem because our society rejects child labor, yet its condition persists. Children no matter where they live should not be exposed to the harshness and injustices in this world; children should be supported and not the ones supporting; hillier should be protected and children should be allowed the basic right to enjoy life. Hershey has been accused of “greasing’ the problem instead of tying to fix it. They need to take Steps to ensure that child labor is not used in their supply chains. There are actions that Hershey can take to stop the use of child labor.
One action that can be taken is that Hershey needs to make certain that their supply chain meets industry standards. They need to begin by tracing their supply chain back to the farm level, sourcing only from farmers who can show through independent verification that they do not use arced or child labor. Additionally, Hershey needs to inform suppliers that they will not tolerate forced labor or child labor from any of their suppliers. They need to ask suppliers to end child labor practices throughout their supply chain, and notify them that they will only be using suppliers that are verified for not using child or forced labor.
Another action that needs to be taken by Hershey is to identify its suppliers so that outside observers can verify conditions on the farm. Moreover, Hershey needs to embrace the strongest system of certification, the Fair Trade Label. “Only one Hershey hostage bar has the certification, leaving all the other popular products unaccounTABLE. ” (Boas, 2010) Hershey needs make certain that all of their products are certified by the Fair Trade Label in an effort to ensure they are not using unfair, unethical, and illegal practices of child labor. From the teleological position, the use of child labor permits the achievement of profits desired.
It has been ten years since chocolate manufacturers such as Hershey have committed to taking action against child labor; however hundreds of thousands of children are still subject to the worse forms of child labor on West African cocoa farms. Child labor is cheap labor. ” (Gamma, 1995) Cheap labor entices multi-national corporate investors to their shores. “In 201 0, Hershey recorded record profits and forecasts showed continued growth for 201 1 (ten Years, Little Progress, 2011) According to the USDA Economic Research Service, cocoa imports to the U.
S. Have soared to metric tons (up from 999,600 in 2001 and cocoa imports to the U. S. Are now valued at $4. 3 billion. (“Ten Years, Little Progress, 201 1) Judging by these figures, Hershey continues to use supply chains that enforce child labor to continue to boost their profits. Children continue to suffer as Hershey profits continue to soar. From the deontological position, child labor is wrong regardless of how much profits are earned, and action needs to be taken to ensure that child labor is no longer used in chocolate production.
There are still 1. 8 million children working in the West African cocoa sector, and there continues to be an urgent need for programs to immediately withdraw child victims from labor and provide them with remediation and an education. (“Ten Years, Little Progress, 2011) Senator Harkin and Representative Engel, working with he U. S. Department of Labor, have played an important role in seeking to ensure that programs to help the victims of child labor are financially supported.
Pressure for companies to soon:e child labor free cocoa is mounting, both from consumers and legislators. Third party verification systems such as Fair Trade Label are being encouraged by chocolate companies to ensure child labor is no longer used in the chocolate industry. The Fair Trade Labeling Organizations International (FOOL) was initiated in the fall of 2002 and works to certify various chocolate companies based on ewe criteria that ensure no exploitation was involved along the way of chocolate production.
Criteria that must be met include the establishment of a just price that is carefully calculated to cover the costs of sustainTABLE production, direct trade, and contact with farmers; the development of marketing co-ops with the foundation of democratic decision making; and the payment of a premium that gets directed to the co-pop community. The FOOL reserves the right to track and verify all documentation that provides evidence of payments made and communications between farmers and manufacturers. (Queerest, 2008) Alternatives need to be used to make certain that chocolate is no longer harvested by children in companies such as Hershey.
Hershey needs to have third party verification by the Fair Trade Label, identify its suppliers so they can be verified, trace its supply chain to the farm level; only sourcing from farmers who can prove they do not used forced child labor, and ask suppliers to end child labor practices throughout their supply chain. Making these changes and efforts will prove to consumers and legislators that Hershey is serious about ending child labor throughout their supply chains. It will prove that the well being of the children is more important than making record profits. My decision might be perceived by Hershey negatively.
Judging by how the company has been under scrutiny for the past decade shows that they really are not concerned about child labor in other countries or in their supply chains as much as they are about earning record profits. Hershey has made promises to clean up their supply chain for years, however to this day no changes have been made to show they intend on doing so. Hershey might perceive my decision as one that has no bearing on their stockholders. So far hey have made no changes but still are making record profits, therefore they might not see a need to change what works for them.
Worldwide, millions of children are working in hazardous conditions that affect their health, safety, and their basic right to enjoy their lives as children. Hershey, which claims 42. 5% of the chocolate market, contain uses to use supply chains that use forced labor and child labor. The effect child labor has on children is detrimental to their health and safety. They are working long hours in unsafe and unsanitary conditions. This treatment of children is not only unethical it is illegal. Children should have the basic right to an education and the right to live as normal children.