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Employment and Working Conditions: Youth Exploitation


Young workers are more vulnerable to exploitation as compared to old workers. This exploitation is base on payment and working conditions among other workplace issues. Many employees intentionally abuse the young worker’s rights, and subsequently expose them to brutal exploitation.

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Employers have power over their employees, whether young or old some employers consider having more power over young workers than older workers, and many of them have been using these powers to abuse the young workers. Factors like naiveness, ignorance, and unemployment have predisposed young workers to the exploitation. (Tannock & flocks, 2003)

The empowered employers willingly provide jobs to the young employees and pretend that they are very considerate and good employers.

Some will go to an extent of introducing the agreement. However, despite the fact that the agreement of employment terms, conditions and pay is signed by the employee and employer, some employers don’t honor the agreement. Instead, they continuously mistreat and discriminate the young worker and violate both the agreement and the worker’s rights. In many cases, the signing of the agreement is not witnessed by the employment advocates, a factor that makes the employer take advantage of the young employees and dishonor the agreement. (Kingsolver 2001).

Most of agreements signed by young workers are understated, making the young workers to agreed and sign for lower payments and unconducive working conditions. In this case, the employee ends up getting underpayments, or even not being paid completely, but since they are ignorant they continuously get the exploitation. (Gale Group 2008).

When the young workers get the understanding of what they are supposed to get in terms of pay, and working conditions, they are naive to talk it out, for the fear of being fired. Many employers give threatening conditions to the young workers and due to the fear, the workers bear the exploitation.

Many cases have been reported where employers are alleged of firing young employers who stand up for their violated rights. The employees are fired or are terminated. They neither get their payment nor better working conditions (Jimenez and World Bank 2006).

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The young workers may have the knowledge of the under payment, but since they don’t have the bargaining power, in the labor market; they end up being exploited, providing labor with little pay. Employers use their power over young workers and aimlessly fire them without any advance notice. They are not regarded as workers who have equal working rights to older workers. (MAU 2007).

The health, welfare and working conditions provided for young workers are poor and unsafe. They are violently assured by other older workers. The workers are neither provided with health insurance policies to cover them, nor safe working environment to reduce the injuries and harm likely to be encountered. Despite the effective services they offer to the business, their health is not considered valuable. In many cases, they are expected to pay for any damages and accidents that occur during their working period from their low payments. (World Marxist 1958).

The young workers are forced to sign contacts during their working course without considering the young worker’s other activities. In this case, the employee’s payments are reduced without notice, and they are forced to sign the new contract, failure to which they are terminated from the employment. (Foreign broadcast information service 1970). Unemployment face by the young people has contributed a lot to this exploitation.

The young workers search for jobs and with the little demand of the employees by the employers, they dictate and create these exploiting conditions to the young employees who abide by them in fear of termination and subsequent unemployment.

Responses against young workers’ exploitation.

Trade unions have been on the front line to respond against young workers’ exploitation whereby they have stood to air the young worker’s voice and help in wages bargaining. (Roy 1972, pp. 250).The young worker’s liberation league responds against young workers’ exploitation by organizing strategies relating to young workers’ job security, discrimination at workplaces and wages.

Many states have come up with youth law, which provides the minimum age at which an individual can be employed, states the appropriate working hours and conditions for employment of young people, and provides the punishment or penalties for the law violations to ensure that the law is effectively adhered to.

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The law has various articles and these articles are subdivided to a way that the content articles which form the law, protects young workers against neglect and abuse, provide security and benefits, enhances equal consideration of all workers without discriminating the young workers, and provision of freedom to expression, expression of individual opinions as well as freedom to associate with other. (Youth law 2008).


Some employers have ensured that safe and healthy working conditions and some have gone further and helped the young workers to get health insurance, compensation and benefit as a response against young workers’ exploitation, discrimination and abuse.

Some employers have extended minimum wage a response against young workers, and have been engaging employment workers when signing employment contacts and agreements. However, the proportion of employers who seem to respond against this exploitation is smaller as compared to the exploiters. (Lonsidale 1985).


Foreign Broadcast Information Service, 1970, Daily report, University of Michigan, United States.

Gale Group, 2008, Compounding vulnerability? Australian labour bulletin, Web.

Jimenez, E and World Bank, 2006, Next generation development, World Bank, Washington, D.C.

Kingsolver, E. 2001, NAFTA Stories, Lynne Rienner, Boulder.

Lonsdale, S 1985, Work and inequality, Longman, London

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Maritime Union of Australia, 2007, Youth exploitation, Maritime Union of Australia, Web.

Marxian economics Periodicals, 1958, World Marxist Review, Progress books, University of California.

Roy, S.1972, Communism in India, University of Michigan, Ann Arbour.

Tannock and Flocks, S, 2003, ‘I know what to struggle is’, Labour studies journal, vol 28, no 1, pp. 1-30.

Youth law, 2008, Employment, Youth law, Web.

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