Main Menu

My Account
Online Free Samples
   Free sample   Environmental sustainability assignment problematic picture of child labor

Environmental Sustainability Assignment: Problematic Picture of Child Labor


Task: Environmental Sustainability Assignment Task: The world is currently facing social and/or environmental problems. (In the case we provide a link to a relevant internet resource. This link is very much just a starting point. You will need to do your own additional independent research to properly understand your chosen problem.)

Case study (social or environmental problem chosen) - Child labour:

The Sustainability Report requires you to select ONE of these problems and to prepare a 1,000-word Report that addresses the following points:

a) Describe the precise harms that are associated with your selected problem. Show the negative social and environmental consequences that it causes for people, communities and/or the environment.

b) Describe some of the business practices and some of the firms that are causing this problem.

c) Explain why the companies you discuss in part (b) continue to act in ways that cause your selected problem.

d) Provide examples of how some companies around the world are acting so as to minimise or avoid the negative consequences that you described in part (a).

Choosing a social or environmental problem from the list provided.
Start by choosing a sustainability issue, which is (child labour) a social or environmental problem). In choosing a problem (child labour), keep in mind that you will need not just to explain the problem (part a) but also discuss how business is involved in causing it (part b), why they do so (part c) and how business is involved in minimising it (part d).

Please note that we have provided a link under each problem to get you started. We provide these to give you a good start, but they are not intended to be sufficient. You will need to do your own additional, independent research in order to complete the various sections of your Report.

Part A
Having chosen your social or environmental problem, the task in Part A is to explain it accurately and clearly. To do this you will need to draw on credible research: you will need to go beyond the links that we provide on the list of possible issues. Don't just tell me that it’s a problem: show me how big of a problem it is by drawing on relevant examples and evidence. Make sure that these come from credible and authoritative sources. Depending on the issue that you choose, you might draw on statistics from the Ministry for the Environment, or the International Labour Organisation, or on well-researched articles from credible news sites – not from some opinion piece in the paper, or a blog post. If I was doing this Report, I would look at providing 5 or 6 references in this paragraph to fully support my contention that my chosen problem is actually a big deal.

Part B
Having established that your chosen problem really is a problem, we now ask you to show how business organisations have been involved in creating this problem. I don’t want to go into too much detail here, because you’ll need to work this out for your own chosen problem. But the process I would follow is this: I would think about my chosen problem and I would think: what sort of business activity causes this problem? Then I would think, what industries and (therefore) what business organisations are involved in this sort of activity? Note that the wording for Part B refers to “business practices and some of the firms”. You need to do both: what are the actual business practices that cause the problems, and what are some of the actual firms involved In these practices that cause the problem? Make sure that the firms you talk about are ones that actually create a meaningful impact in terms of the problem you are writing about. This paragraph asks you, again, to do the sort of work that is going to require some research. I don’t have some magic number of references – it depends on the nature of your problem and how firms contribute to it, but I would be thinking of at least 3 or 4.

Part C
The problems that you have described in Part A, and the business activities contribute to it (Part B) are quite well known. In Part C we ask you to explain why the companies that you discuss in Part B continue to act in ways that cause significant harms to people, communities and planet. Make sure that you draw on relevant course material as your explanation here needs to be clear and comprehensive.

Part D
In this Report we want for you to focus not just on the problem, but also (and especially) on something more positive: what firms can do to address this problem. Remember that an over-riding question for this ERS paper is: how can business operate in a way that generates a positive social (or environmental) impact, rather than a negative impact? So, the task in Part D is to describe how”some companies around the world are acting so as to minimise or avoid the negative consequences that you described in part (a).” Please do not write about how charitable organisations have responded, or what government programmes are doing. We are interested in seeing how it is possible to conduct business in a way that solves our most pressing problems. Again, I don’t want to go into too much detail here – it's up to you to find examples of companies who are doing creative and constructive things to address your chosen problem. But you might start by looking at the slides for Weeks 7, 8 and 10 – there are many examples given there of companies trying to address social and environmental problems while still remaining viable and profitable businesses. Some of them may be relevant to your chosen issue. You will need to ensure that you choose companies that are making a significant positive difference (not just some minor or trivial difference) and you will need to be able to demonstrate that these firms really are doing the good things that you claim (see next section). A really important note on thinking critically in Part D Companies often like to say that they are doing good things for people and planet, because that is good for their public reputation. It doesn’t always mean that they are as good as they say they are. So be very careful if your only reference is to the company’s website, or their sustainability report. Those things might be valid resources to draw on. But please don’t rely simply on what companies say about them. Look also for reports or article published by others, so that you can report with confidence on what these companies are doing.


Executive Summary
The report on environmental sustainability assignment tries to present the problematic picture of the rampant child labor and exploitation prevalent in the world. The widespread problem perpetuated by most of the companies, makes it important to deal with, and to give children a better future. The Report is divided into four segments, where the opening segment is the Introduction. The second segment talks of the business practices and some of the firms that cause this problem. The third paragraph engages with the practices of the firms and companies that are able to demonstrate a positive impact on the world. The final segment is the conclusion, which would provide the audience with the principles that can inspire the businesses across the world to address human right violations.

Part A

Article 32 of The United Nations Convention on Rights of the Children recognizes the right of a child below the age of 18 years, to be protected from economic exploitation, and envisages appropriate penal penalties for ensuring the effective enforcement of this Article (ILO, 2021). The International Labour Organization, and the UNICEF, aim to take legislative, social and other measures to ensure a child’s healthy development. Yet, this world standing at the peak of globalization and technology advancement, is witnessing 160 million children – 63 million girls and 97 million girls- being economically exploited as labors(ILO, 2021). This translates to roughly 1 in 10 of all children worldwide, and more than 79 million children are engaged in hazardous work(OHCHR, 2021). The incidence of Covid 19 has worsened the condition, where wide scale migration has subjected more than 30 million children to child labor. Research shows the children are made work for more than 12 to 14 hours a day, for a meager sum of money(Harvard Business Review, 2016). The child’s mental, physical and social growth is hampered in unimaginable ways, working in harsh unhuman conditions, exploited for their labor.The child who is the future of the nation, who must be protected for the well being of the society, is susceptible to massive risks owing to capitalism.

Part B

The ever-growing industry of global textile and garment supply chain, the booming fashion industry is responsible for more than 100 million children being exploited and coerced to work in poor working conditions (UNICEF, 2020). Children are being made to work at almost all different stages of supply chain- from high tech yarn and spilling mills to big handloom industries. They are subjected to arduous tasks ranging from animal slaughter, to dyeing, from waste disposal, to packing and packaging, and dealing with end products like glue, meat or untreated rubber. The 1.2 US Billion Dollar Industry of Leather Exports of Dhaka, depends on cheap labor, and 75% of child labor, snatching their livelihoods (Maksud et al., 2021). Fast Fashion companies like H&M, Gap, Marks and Spencer’s often find themselves in controversy owing to the rightly pointed accusations of child exploitation and human trafficking(Guardian, 2018). The easier methods of faulty auditing and unauthorized ways of sub-contracting, catalyzes the deteriorating working conditions(Economic Times, 2021). Low wages, increased working hours, and unfathomable working conditions push children towards a dangerous future.

Part C
Even though the companies make tall promises of adhering to the ethical norms, but it surely not the case. The primary reason for ignoring the substandard and unethical work conditions is profit maximization (Forbes, 2019). The companies aim to reduce the cost of production, by involving cheap labor, and exploiting them. The costlier methods of producing fast fashion industry will eventually be economically harmful. Secondly, the fashion brands and the retailers are introducing newer products almost every day, to respond to the changing fashion demands(Forbes, 2019).To be able to sell clothes are bargain prices, and to adjust to changing requirements, the companies look for cheaper options. Thirdly and sadly, these big companies promote willful ignorance of the human right violations occurring at their back office. It is not in their favor to actively investigate supply chains to seek information of child labor and the mal-practices being perpetuated (UNICEF, 2021). It would wrong to say that companies do not care of ethically conducting their operations, but there is surely some unethical behavior involved.

Part D
Even though it seems companies can do whatever they want to, that is not the case. As per various internationally accepted principles, like the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the companies must act in due diligence to not infringe the fundamental right of others, including the child labor, and a responsibility to uphold human rights (Guiding Principle on Business and Human Rights, 2011). One of the ways by which the companies can include corporate accountability including Corporate Social Responsibility in the company policies to ensure human rights are respected. Brands and companies must take human right risk assessments seriously, keeping in mind the various stakeholders like trade unions, civil society and the environment (Guardian, 2016). In order to effectively deal with workers needs and complaints, genuine grievance redressal mechanism must be at place to bring the legitimate change happen. Furthermore, companies must not only make efforts to eradicate child labor but also ensure smooth transition of workers to formal education system. This will enable the companies to have a positive impact on the society, and negate the evil consequences of child labor. One of the leading sectors that are actively contributing towards the positive change in the child rights and in promotion of their education, has been companies like Third Space Learning which makes regular efforts to spread the idea of global education, and are against those who perpetrate the ill practice of child exploitation. The Company is becoming notoriously famous for its efforts to execute the policies that aim to promote education among the children in the country (CMI, 2016). One of the leading lessons that this company, along with other socially responsible businesses, is to actively engage with the evils present in the society, and make it a policy consideration to achieve the goals.

The commitment and the passion of companies is to be a lesson for similarly growing companies.

To conclude, the willingness of the companies coupled with their clear concise policies, would go long way to find a solution to child labor. One of the ways by which the companies can take lessons by other socially responsible companies is by having a robust enforcement mechanism at place, and a genuine grievance redressal mechanism. Therefore, recommendation framework that could be followed to integrate child rights could be in three parts. Firstly, to assess the child rights, and the preparedness of the company to respond to it. It includes integrating the child rights into the policy making. Secondly, require monitoring the progress and the child right outcomes of the companies, with ensuring stakeholder engagement. Thirdly, a framework must be at place to collaborate and support, by investing promising initiatives(UNICEF, 2021).

Reference List Why Companies Are Blind to Child Labor. Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021).,"The Problem of Child Labour Needs More Than One Solution" pp. 7-8. Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021). Children in child labour. Availableat: (Accessed: 17 September 2021). labour. Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021) . Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021).

Maksud, A.K.M., ReazHossain, K., Sayed, S. and Arulanantham, A., 2021. Mapping of Children Engaged in the Worst Forms of Child Labour in the Supply Chain of the Leather Industry in Bangladesh. factories in Myanmar employed 14-year-old workers.Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021).

Sharma, Y. (2021) Over 9 million children could be pushed into child labour by 2022: ILO, The Economic Times.Environmental sustainability assignment Availableat: (Accessed: 17 September 2021).

Kielburger, C. (2021) Council Post: Supply, Demand And Child Labor: How Businesses And Nonprofits Can Get Kids Out Of Factories, Forbes. Available at: child-labor-how-businesses-and-nonprofits-can-get-kids-out-of-factories/?sh=2c6587f923d1 (Accessed: 17 September 2021). (2021) Availableat: (Accessed: 17 September 2021). Child labour is part of most of what we buy today: what can we do? Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021). | Convention on the Rights of the Child. Available at: (Accessed: 17 September 2021).


Related Samples

Question Bank

Looking for Your Assignment?

Search Assignment
Plagiarism free Assignment









9/1 Pacific Highway, North Sydney, NSW, 2060
1 Vista Montana, San Jose, CA, 95134