Industrial Revolution | Child Labour and the Industrial Age

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Society in the Industrial Revolution - Child Labour Orphan children were most vulnerable to exploitation, as they couldn't fend for themselves. Due to their helplessness, they were forced to work in factories. Families sent their children to work in factories due to being trapped by poverty. The children were sent to the factories which put them under poor conditions and they received little pay to support their working families. Factories were very poor health and safety wise, therefore the child 'slaves' didn't have suitable working conditions, severely affecting their health in short term and long term. Some children signed up for work and were excited to do so, as they didn't know that the factories were so unsafe and they would be overworked and open to exploitation. Dangerous factory machines would often cause injury which was severe if the user wasn't paying attention for a few seconds to their work. Fatalities in factories were also a common event. Some children - usually boys - worked as chimney sweeps. This involved squeezing into the small chimney space and crawling up the flue, cleaning the soot with a handheld brush. The job wasn't considered done until the child reached the very top of the chimney. If a child was reluctant to do the complete job, their master would force them into the flue and light a fire beneath them. Since schooling wasn't free in England before 1870, poor children went to free "Ragged Schools" set up by charities so after work, the poor were taught reading, writing and maths. A working day started with a 5am wake up, followed by 2 hours of factory work and then breakfast at 8am. There was then solid work until 12 for lunch, then resume work at 1pm until 8pm. Children became employed because they could work the machines better than adults could due to their smaller hands. It was also cheaper to employ children over

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