Blood Diamonds, Sounds Impossible

Children work in harsh conditions to make minimum wage

Angola supplies lots of diamonds, yours could be illegal


Child labor in Angola mines is very bad. Most of the miners that work there have know experience, and they get no training. The conditions that the miners work in is very harsh. The miners often get sick from spending so much time inside of the mines. These miners usually work everyday in mines that are steaming hot and usually very harsh. The children will usually stay as miners their entire lives because they can't get another kid or they're in bonded labor where they have a debt that they will never pay off. Miners will be beaten if they don't find diamonds, or they refuse to work. This type of child labor is going on in the world right now. The children have to work because their families need the money. The people in the United States are trying to free many children from the mines but they refuse. They say that they need to work to earn money for their families. The children usually go down holes that are very deep. The masters use children to fit in tight places where the adults can not reach or fit. If police find out you are an illegal miner they might free you or they could just kill you and it wouldn't matter. Many miners are illegal. This type of labor will go on for a long time if we don't stop it. Africa says it has explored 40% of Angola's diamond rich territory. We need to stop this type of labor.

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Seeing Blood diamonds in person

Zama Coursen- Neff interviewed some of the miners working in the mines. She interviewed a bot named Adam. He was in a mining incident where the tunnel he was mining collapsed. It killed two of his friends. That didn't stop him from mining. He had to move from mine to mine because he failed his final exam at his school and couldn't continue his education. He was paid with bags of rocks, which hopefully he could find traces of gold in them. Adam started mining at the age of 12 years old. He has been mining for four years. The children can suffer from serious injuries mining. They even use deadly and toxic mercury to process their minerals. Doctors say that the Mercury makes the patients like zombies. They just stare at them blankly. They say that the government has laws that they can't enforce children until they're 18, but the government has not been enforcing this law.

Take Action

You could right a letter to the companies that use child labor to find their diamonds and tell them that you won't be buying their diamonds anytime soon unless they stop using child labor. If you really wanted to help you could get some people together to try and make a rally to stop child labor in mines in Angola. You could then donate to places who are trying free the slaves, so they can get better equipment and technology. You could go to the stores directly and talk to the employees about it. Maybe they will listen and go on strike until they stop using child labor. That would take a lot of guts though. The angry letter would work very well in trying to stop child labor.

Bibliographies

- "Brilliant Earth." Brilliant Earth. N.p., n.d. Web. 16 Feb. 2016.

- "The Truth About Inflation." (2015): n. pag. Web.


Journal Article