Thursday, February 10, 2011

China cracks down on exploitation of disabled child beggars

From Culture Clash Daily:

Without an adequate social welfare system the exploitation of children can be virtually impossible to stop. Around the world there are an estimated 250 million children involved in child labor.

The most vulnerable are those coming from a family living in poverty. Add onto poverty a child with a disability and it a recipe for disaster for families and their children.

The Chinese government has recognized the enormity of the issue and today announced its progress after cracking down on those involved in the growing business of child abduction then forcing a young person into begging.

As part of a national crackdown already 6 children have been rescued. Each was forced to leave their family to work on the streets until recently thanks to locals who notified police after responding to an online government campaign.

One disabled boy, just 10 years old, was rescued in the Hunan province. The man allegedly responsible for his abduction, 61 year old Gong Chunfeng, was detained by police but claimed he had send money, each year back to the child's parents.

Whether parents are complicit in the illegal begging of their children is evidently one issue that needs to be addressed by the government in terms of poverty.

As one official pointed out, the annual income of those relying on agriculture is 1,500 Yuan. Yet the Chunfeng, who was arrested for the abduction of the 10 year old boy claimed that each year he would send 4000 Yuan back to the family.

China is not alone in its struggle to protect the rights of children. In India an estimated 44,000 children disappear from their homes each year.

With organized crime exploiting the children the probability of reuniting families is virtually impossible.