Write about the need for consumer awareness at school level. Children are becoming one of the largest consumers in the country and parents are permitting their children to take decisions while shopping. Most of the parents have made it a point to take their children to shopping and this has made most children aware of the different kinds of products that are available. Children now check the details of the product and enquire thoroughly before buying any product from the market. Consumer protection is an important factor because the dealers usually target the younger sections of the society to sell their product in a tactical way.
Though the Government has taken many steps including legislative, to protect consumers, the consumers are still cheated. Advertisement is the major medium through which a company attracts the consumers. The change in social and economic set up of the country has increased the competition and this has made the producers adopt very unfair and unethical means of trade. It is not a surprising fact that the consumer courts take so many years to process a case because the court has so many cases pending. With the majority of population unemployed and illiterate, consumer awareness remains a problem.
Children especially are becoming the young consumers of the country. Consumer education is an important part of this process and is a basic consumer right that must be introduced at the school level. The most important step in consumer education is the awareness of consumer rights. However, consumer education is incomplete without the responsibilities and duties of consumers, and this influences individual behavior to a great extent. Schools must teach children to obtain information about goods and services, understand the motives of a dealer and advertisements, to shop wisely and distinguish between wants and needs.
They must also understand the how a dealer takes advantage of temptation and greed to sell his goods. All of us spend most of our leisure time watching television but the young minds are more sensitive to advertisements and offers given by companies. There has been a significant increase in the number of television channels and majority of the advertisements aired on them are aimed at young children, especially those covering food products, beverages and cosmetics.
Schools also need to help children develop the ability to understand the purpose of advertisements. They must train the children in such a way that they are able to distinguish between the right and the wrong. Schools must also teach about environment and conservation of natural resources. The concept of reduce, reuse and recycle must be thought to the students. There is an immediate need to include consumer education into the curriculum in order to cope up with social and economic changes.