English Hon. 10
6 February 2012
Are We Freely Exploiting Children to Abuse on Reality TV?
An incident of child abuse occurs every ten seconds, and more than five children die every day as a result. Approximately 80% of children that die from abuse are under the age of four. Reports have kept a steady growth rate for the past ten years, with the total number of reports nationwide increasing 45% since 1987. Since 1985, the rate of child abuse fatalities has increased by nearly 40%. These statistics were taken from a National Abuse Statistics survey.
CAPTION: Taken from a study on child abuse by Childhelp.org, this graph represents the number of child deaths per day due to child abuse and neglect. As shown, the number has significantly increased, and is still continuing to increase. Many cases of child abuse have been recorded, and in many of those cases, innocent children have died. This is a growing problem and it continues to get worse. Most everyone is familiar with the various types of abuse such as neglect, sexual abuse, physical abuse, psychological maltreatment, and medical neglect. Sadly, there is a new type of child abuse added to the list, the exploitation of young children and their privacy on reality television. According to AbuseWatch.net, children must be recognized as child actors if they are to be used in reality shows or any other type of TV production. This is not the case today. Basically, having these children on television without any pay is child labor, and they should legally be protected by child labor laws. The sad fact is TV producers are not employing these minors and are ignoring these child labor laws. They’re getting away with this crime because the children are considered as “participants”, like someone in a documentary. Due to this classification, it is excused from federal and state child labor laws as the children’s activities are being recorded on camera, opposed to the performance of...