Antonio Doukas UK

International Economics: Children at Work: 1. Is child-labor/child-work an international or a local problem? Why do you think it is one or the other? Or is it both? And in any case, what role do you see for the international community in this discussion?
Child labor is an international and local problem. While we have programs and organizations set up to advance the rights of children in several countries, such as Save the Children, Rewrite the Future, etc., we also have foreign children brought in as workers, “cannon fodder for political causes, or are treated as sex toys”1. This problem is a two-edged sword. While we are telling other countries to stop the practice of child-exploitation, we have not completely destroyed the problem on the home front. The idea is that if other countries have equal rights for children, there will be no children to migrate into the UK. We, as a country, also need to buckle down and destroy the establishment of child exploitation by keeping stricter watch on our citizens. This does not mean that we are willing to drop all child labor. Some children work in healthy environments, which do not interfere with their schooling, or physical/mental health. The only problem in this area is making sure each one gets a work permit, is free from danger of any kind (including association with a sex-offender, or ex-criminal), and has limits to how much he/she can work, and a minimum amount he/she is paid.

2.

It is clear that there is a link between education and child work, as increase in the former results in a decrease of the latter. What are the policy options in the area of education? What can be done to use this proven relationship in the effort to reduce child work? Think about some potential problems like local resources, family needs, and traditions or cultures.
The programs in which we put forth to slow down child labor abroad focuses on getting children a proper education. As a result, the children end up working less, and instead pursue a scholarly career, therefore, there seems to be a direct link between education and child work. This relationship seems inverse in the UK. Education in England is some of the best in the world, in fact children from around the world escape to England for a chance at better education. Children working even forty-hour work weeks, manage to attend school as well. The only connection that can be made, is that because they are working to such an extent, their interest and involvement in school has diminished, and thus the original association remains. Our save the children program sets up education centers so as to reduce the amount of illiterate children, and in turn reducing child labor. We could also start up a program of education for the parents of these children, to teach them the importance of family, education, and the necessity for parents to be the providers while letting their children be just that, a child.

3.

What should be the steps or process for reducing or eliminating child work and child labor? Are stricter regulations on employers enough? Remember, the latter only address the demand side of the children at work equation, what about the supply side, what about the children and their families?
Child labor has to be cut at the root. One possible solution is to have parents and employers sign an agreement which states how much the child will work, and how much he/she will get paid. This would guarantee fair work time and wage for both the child and employer. Fair treatment should also be mentioned in the agreement. This way, if anything is breeched, the employer can be held up in a court

of law with substantial evidence. The only area this doesn't take care of is illegal alien child labor, but our immigration security plan will take care of this problem. As far as international child labor, we are currently doing all we can to help.

4.

The scenario discussed the Brazilian model to reduce child labor and another idea using government loans to parents. Do you support any of these ideas or do you have a different plan to arrive at the same goal? Should such specific plans be the responsibility of the local government or of the international community? And who would organize and fund such projects?
The Brazilian model seems like the best bet, however, these are all goals the UK is striving to achieve (“economic growth, equitable distribution of income, investment in education, and a social safety net for children”2) and would thus not provide any immediate change. Giving government grants to parents does not guarantee anything; the parents may irresponsibly spend it, or still send their child out to work. Instead we propose a different solution, as mentioned in the answer above. The first part of the plan is totally UK's responsibility however the responsibility of the latter part of the plan rests jointly on UK and the international community, specifically the EU. As far as child labor on the international scale goes, Brazil's plan is the most optimal for maximum results.

5.

Up until now, bans on products made by children and especially exploited children were the result of voluntary campaigns by social activists winning public opinion. Does your country support a more compulsory system in which there will be a binding and mandatory trade ban on all products made by children? Is such a system desirable, and if so is it feasible? What are some of the possible shortcomings?
Although the long-term effects would be more than desirable, the short-term effects would be devastating. Enforcing such an international policy would not only be arduous, but would promote other horrible things like child prostitution, and drug trafficking2. Some countries would ultimately collapse and be unable to go on without child labor. If children are not working, then they are in school, but some countries do not have proper education or education facilities. In any way you can look at it, this solution would be foolish; the plan stated above is our best bet.

6.

Considering the relative political power MNCs posses and especially in the developing countries they invent in, should the international effort concentrate on governments or on the MNCs. In other words, will it be useful and effective to come up with an international treaty that is only binding to governments or should the international community draft agreements addressing the role of MNCs more directly?
A corporation has no real political power, and for them to influence anything, they would have to be in unison with all the other corporations. As a result, multi-national corporations would be hard pressed to enforce their regulations on countries whose governments didn't share their views, therefore the effort should be concentrated on the governments first. This way, the country will adopt better principals as far as child labor laws, and then the companies will naturally change their policies as a result. The MNCs can aid in the process by urging the countries to slow down their child-labor in that corporation, and then the transition would be gradual and easier.

Special Topic: Migration in the World

1.

What is the position of your country regarding migration and immigration in general? And what is your position concerning the role of the international community?
We do not have a real problem with people migrating from our country; however we are trying to restrict who comes in. Our main concern is with the EU. Being on of its leading members, we need to help all of Europe if we want to help ourselves. With open borders in effect (the ability to travel anywhere in the EU without showing your passport, except when you first enter), we have to up security everywhere. In light of the several recent terrorist attacks, we are mainly concerned with the security of our people, and stability of our nation. If there is even one weak security point, terrorists can take advantage of it, and use the open borders regulation to infiltrate us. We thus need to make sure that people coming into the EU, from anywhere, will undergo the same safety regulations. This will not only protect the UK, but the entire European Community.

2.

Do countries have the right to choose what people they accept according to parameters like education, work experience, and talent? What about weak populations coming from LDCs and lacking these skills? Are some immigration laws violations of human rights?
They have every right to, but as stated, people from LDCs have to be taken into consideration. By putting up parameters, this limits the amount of people who come in, and those who do will only benefit the country. This, however, would hurt those coming from LDCs in that where they were from, they might not have been able to get an education and/or work experience. Taking that into account, the UK should include that in the requirements for immigration. When an immigrant enters the UK (or the EU), factors such as nation of origin, reason for emigrating, etc., should also be considered, alongside education and work experience. This way, if a person has low work experience and/or education, it could be checked if he/she was from an LDC. If they are, then such factors are acceptable, if not, then they are not. But all who come, including those from LDCs, should be required to contribute to society within a reasonable amount of time. This way, they don't go on welfare and expect the government to pay for them to live without having to work.

3.

Should there be a uniform global policy dealing with asylum seekers and refugees? Is a country sometimes right not to accept asylum seekers? And who is responsible to monitor and/or fund asylum seekers?
No, each country should show its own amount of sympathy to refugees and asylum seekers, however, it should be required that all accept a bare minimum. Although it is not the responsibility of the government to provide for refugees, it is common courtesy that they do. By doing so, however bad it may sound, makes the county look better, and can be used a s a bargaining chip in some situations. So, whether it be sympathy or prowess, a country should have a choice about how far above they want to go above the minimum. This being said, the fact that the government fully supports them, and they pay no tax has to be factored in; this would cause any possible restrictions. Now, when they are in the country, it is the government's responsibility to care for their basic needs. They are to be cared for by volunteers and the local police force in government sponsored facilities. If any of these people feel capable enough to seek work or education, we will aid them in that process. If they then are able to be self-sustaining, we will grant them permission to live in the UK. Those who do not show prospect, will be shipped back to their country when conditions have improved.

4.

Should we warp immigration laws in the global war on terror? Or, are security arguments just another excuse for EDCs to close their borders for LDCs?
The global war on terror should only urge us to increase security for a safer tomorrow. This by no means implies we are trying to keep out those from LDCs, since we treat people coming in from all countries with the same regulations. We need to keep our country safe, and at the same time, keep our security free of prejudice and inequality.

5.

What should be done about illegal immigration? Is this a matter for each country to deal with individually or should this be discussed and dealt with on the international level? What is the most efficient way to curb illegal immigration?
Illegal immigrants should be removed, unless they have an outstanding reason to stay. If the wish to live in the UK, then they can do so like everyone else. We will not tolerate anyone trying to take the easy way out, and not pay taxes, and merely mooch off the land. This matter is definitely an international matter, but as it concerns us, mostly within the EU. If the enter the EU by legal means, they should enter the UK by the same. If they are planning to live in our country, they should let that be made known as soon as they enter the EU. By upping security, and preventing illegal immigration, it will become a very controllable problem.

6.

What would international immigration treaties look like? Is there ever a chance for open borders or at least less restriction on the movement of people? What are the implications for those who believe in the global civil society and in global citizenship?
International immigration treaties would consist of an increase in security in all affected nations. So, if there are to be open borders in the UK, then anyone first entering the EU must go through rigorous security. This allows us, and all other countries in the EU feel safer. Global citizenship is not possible; not at this point in time. With terrorism rampant, no chances can be taken. If it were to come about, it would only be a title with no power, thus pointless (quite like our queen).

Works Cited:
1. http://www.unicef.org.uk/publications/pdf/ECECHILD2_A4.pdf 2. http://www.globaled.uconn.edu/Spring07/IE-scenario-print.htm 3. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4220002.stm

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