Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery

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Labor - Adult

 

*** FEATURED ARTICLES ***

Belarus

500 human trafficking crimes exposed in Belarus this year [2006]

ITAR-TASS News Agency of Russia, Minsk, 26/10/2006

-- Source: http://www.tass.ru/eng/level2.html?NewsID=10926716&PageNum=0

www.humantrafficking.org/updates/453

[accessed 13 June 2013]

Some 500 crimes of human trafficking were exposed in Belarus in the first nine months of this year, including more than 160 cases when the victims were taken abroad.

According to Belarussian representatives, the problem of recruiting citizens for sexual or labor exploitation abroad remains quite acute. According to an analysis of criminal cases, Byelorussians are taken to 30 countries of the world for sexual or labor exploitation

The problem of labor exploitation of Belarussians at construction sites in Russia has also became topical recently. They are promised high pay, but, upon arriving at the point of destination, Russian employers take away their passports and force them to work 12 to 14 hours a day, using physical violence on those who resist.

 

 

Dominican Republic

Modern Slavery - Human bondage in Africa, Asia, and the Dominican Republic

Ricco Villanueva Siasoco, Pearson Education, publishing as Infoplease, April 18, 2001

www.infoplease.com/spot/slavery1.html

[accessed 2 February 2011]

CANE-CUTTERS IN THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - In the Dominican Republic, the collection of slaves for the busy harvest season is more random. The Dominican army, with the support of the State Sugar Council (known as the CEA), "hauls Haitians off public buses, arrests them in their homes or at their jobs, and delivers them to the cane fields," according to Charles Jacobs.  Some of the cane-cutters sign on to work voluntarily. When the number of workers does not meet the harvest's demand, the Dominican army is set into action. The army's captives are forced to work at gunpoint and beaten if they try to escape.

 

 

Eritrea

Eritrea 'like a giant prison', claims human rights group

Xan Rice in Nairobi, The Guardian, 16 April 2009

www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/apr/16/eritrea-africa-human-rights-refugees

[accessed 4 February 2011]

Government's policies on torture, conscription and mass detention creating refugee crisis, Human Rights Watch says.   Eritrea is becoming a "giant prison" due to its government's policies of mass detention, torture and prolonged military conscription, according to a report published today .   Human Rights Watch (HRW) said state repression had made the tiny Red Sea state one of the highest producers of refugees in the world, with those fleeing risking death or collective punishment against their families.

There is no freedom of speech, worship or movement in Eritrea, while many adults are forced into national service at token wages until up to 55 years of age.

 

 

Myanmar

Remarks at Swearing-in Ceremony

Mark P. Lagon, Director, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, Washington DC, July 9, 2007

2001-2009.state.gov/g/tip/rls/rm/07/88003.htm

[accessed 13 June 2013]

Last week in Southeast Asia, I met Aye Aye Win, a young Burmese woman who dared to search for work beyond her own tortured country. A recruiter painted a beautiful picture of work in a neighboring country. Aye Aye assumed substantial debt to cover up-front costs required by the recruiter for this job placement.  Together with some 800 Burmese migrants, many children, Aye Aye was "placed" in a shrimp farming and processing factory. But it wasn’t a job. It was a prison camp.

The isolated 10-acre factory was surrounded by steel walls, 15 feet tall with barbed wire fencing, located in the middle of a coconut plantation far from roads. Workers weren’t allowed to leave and were forbidden phone contact with any one outside. They lived in run-down wooden huts, with hardly enough to eat.  Aye Aye is a brave, daring soul. She tried to escape with three other women. But factory guards caught them and dragged them back to the camp. They were punished as an example to others, tied to poles in the middle of the courtyard, and refused food or water. Aye Aye told me how her now beautiful hair was shaved off as another form of punishment, to stigmatize her. And how she was beaten for trying to flee.  Beaten. Tortured. Starved. Humiliated. Is this not slavery??

 

 

*** ARCHIVES ***

Armenia

Gyumri’s Human Trafficking Victims

Varduhi Zakaryan, Hetq Online, January 15, 2007

hetq.am/eng/news/5409/gyumris-human-trafficking-victims.html/

[accessed 5 September 2014]

“Seven of us lived in one room, where we didn't even have the most basic facilities. We would be kept partly hungry almost all the time – there would be days when we would eat dry bread, cabbage stems and even days when we would go hungry. We had already been working in those conditions for eight months when we learned that Ararat had not sent any money back to our families, even though he would swear on his brother's grave that our families were receiving payments regularly each month,” narrated 42-year old Robert Karapetyan, a resident of Gyumri.

 

 

Bahrain

Bahrain activists hope for better protection of workers' rights

Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief, Gulf News, February 13, 2007

gulfnews.com/news/gulf/bahrain/bahrain-activists-hope-for-better-protection-of-workers-rights-1.161089

[accessed 20 January 2011]

LACK OF LEGISLATION - Around 270,000 foreigners out of total population of 710,000 live in Bahrain, whose economy depends heavily on them. But the lack of comprehensive legislation on foreign workers, mainly from Asia, who come to Bahrain to work as domestic servants and in the construction industry often means that they have to put up with physical abuse, sexual harassment, non-payment or delay in payment of salary and long hours of work.  "We want to use the workshop to increase awareness, knowledge and understanding of the issue of exploitative labour and labour trafficking.

 

 

Bahrain

Confronting the Taboo of Human Trafficking

John Defterios, Khaleej Times Online, 13 March 2009

www.cnn.com/CNNI/Programs/mme/blog/2009/03/horrific-traffic.html

[accessed 18 August 2015]

Forty-year-old Suryavathi Rao fled the home of her employer that morning shoeless with only a nightgown and bible to her name.

The years of domestic labour have taken their toll.  She could easily pass for 60 if not a few years older.  After working 16 hours a day, seven days a week for a year and a half, Suryavathi could not take it anymore. 

She said through a translator that her meagre salary of $108 a month had not been paid for six months.  She complained about not being fed meals and surviving on the generosity of her neighbour another domestic worker who pulled together leftovers to get by. 

Suryavathi could not get through three sentences without breaking into tears.  As a result of her fleeing for protection, she has become a runaway worker with no rights.  Her employer holds her passport.  The best she can hope for is to get the passport back and hope that the shelter can give her enough money to buy a ticket and fly home to Southern India.  It is not that simple of course, since back home Suryavathi fears she won’t be welcomed back due to her “failure” to send back money and keep a job.

This is the life of a forced labourer and the complex world of human trafficking.  Technically, Suryavathi was not trafficked.  She had a sponsor agency that she paid $1100 to back in India and is still charging here 5 per cent a month interest on the balance.  But she certainly did not expect slave like conditions when she arrived. 

 

 

Barbados

Human trafficking in Barbados and six other Caribbean countries

Caribbean Net News, Bridgetown, Barbados, March 18, 2005

www.caribbeannewsnow.com/caribnet/2005/03/18/trafficking.shtml

[accessed 21 January 2011]

Human trafficking is a reality in Barbados and some of its Caribbean neighbors, and it’s being reported that some of those people brought illegally into the country are being forced into labor.  These findings were made during an exploratory study that examined Barbados, the Bahamas, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Lucia, the Netherlands Antilles and Suriname.

Co-ordinator of the study, Ashley Garrett said traffickers in these countries are using the illegal status of their “workers” to control and take advantage of them.

“There is a common thread that sometimes the (trafficker) would say, ‘your situation is better off than what you left so if you’re working for seven days a week, getting paid minimally or you’re not getting paid at all, but we’re providing you with some room and board, then that’s ok’,” she said.

But she added that “in the international definitions and in many of the national legislations of these countries, that’s illegal and certainly forced labour.”

 

 

Belarus

500 human trafficking crimes exposed in Belarus this year [2006]

ITAR-TASS News Agency of Russia, Minsk, 26/10/2006

-- Source: http://www.tass.ru/eng/level2.html?NewsID=10926716&PageNum=0

www.humantrafficking.org/updates/453

[accessed 13 June 2013]

Some 500 crimes of human trafficking were exposed in Belarus in the first nine months of this year, including more than 160 cases when the victims were taken abroad.

According to Belarussian representatives, the problem of recruiting citizens for sexual or labor exploitation abroad remains quite acute. According to an analysis of criminal cases, Byelorussians are taken to 30 countries of the world for sexual or labor exploitation

The problem of labor exploitation of Belarussians at construction sites in Russia has also became topical recently. They are promised high pay, but, upon arriving at the point of destination, Russian employers take away their passports and force them to work 12 to 14 hours a day, using physical violence on those who resist.

 

 

Botswana

Botswana in sweat shops, human trafficking crisis

Gowenius Toka, Sunday Standard, 21-10-2007

www.sundaystandard.info/article.php?NewsID=2186&GroupID=1

[accessed 23 January 2011]

The Sunday Standard turned up further information that another company, Zheng Ming, which operated a sweatshop in Ramotswa, was part of an international trade in modern day slavery. Industrial Court Judge, Elijah Legwaila, would later rule that “it appears that Chinese nationals pay large sums of money to recruitment agencies who send them abroad with all sorts of promises and that some Chinese nationals even leave China with promises of work in developed countries and that by the time such people land at any destination they have neither the money nor the bargaining power to protect their rights.

“These Chinese nationals are then housed and fed in compounds at the pleasure of the employer. Their passports, air tickets, work and residence permits are retained by the employer.”   Legwaila was passing judgment in a case in which Bin Quin Lin, a Chinese national working for Zheng Ming Knitwear, was held in forced labour without pay. Chinese investors are the biggest investors in the textile industry which exports garments to America under the lucrative AGOA agreement.

 

 

Dominican Republic

Modern Slavery - Human bondage in Africa, Asia, and the Dominican Republic

Ricco Villanueva Siasoco, Pearson Education, publishing as Infoplease, April 18, 2001

www.infoplease.com/spot/slavery1.html

[accessed 2 February 2011]

CANE-CUTTERS IN THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC - In the Dominican Republic, the collection of slaves for the busy harvest season is more random. The Dominican army, with the support of the State Sugar Council (known as the CEA), "hauls Haitians off public buses, arrests them in their homes or at their jobs, and delivers them to the cane fields," according to Charles Jacobs.  Some of the cane-cutters sign on to work voluntarily. When the number of workers does not meet the harvest's demand, the Dominican army is set into action. The army's captives are forced to work at gunpoint and beaten if they try to escape.

 

 

El Salvador

Testimony of Sonia Beatriz Lara Campos

The National Labor Committee, October 1999

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 5 September 2011]

About 800 people work there.  There are 8 production lines, with 60 to 63 people in each, plus other sections.   The work shift is Monday to Friday, beginning at 6:50am.  They give us between 12 and 12:55 for lunch, with no other break.  Leaving time is 7pm.  On Saturdays we worked from 6:50am to 4pm. 

Last year in April we began to work at night.  We worked from Monday to Friday 6:50am to 7pm, and from 7:30pm to 10:30pm.  On Saturdays we worked from 6:50am until 7pm.  And on Sunday we worked from 6:50am to 5pm.  Or, if we weren’t going to work on Sunday, we would work on Saturday all night until 5:00 on Sunday morning.  

The overtime hours, and working on Sundays, was obligatory.  As an inspector, I was required to work all these hours on my feet.

 

 

Eritrea

Eritrea 'like a giant prison', claims human rights group

Xan Rice in Nairobi, The Guardian, 16 April 2009

www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/apr/16/eritrea-africa-human-rights-refugees

[accessed 4 February 2011]

Government's policies on torture, conscription and mass detention creating refugee crisis, Human Rights Watch says.   Eritrea is becoming a "giant prison" due to its government's policies of mass detention, torture and prolonged military conscription, according to a report published today .   Human Rights Watch (HRW) said state repression had made the tiny Red Sea state one of the highest producers of refugees in the world, with those fleeing risking death or collective punishment against their families.

There is no freedom of speech, worship or movement in Eritrea, while many adults are forced into national service at token wages until up to 55 years of age.

 

 

Haiti

Slavery: Worldwide Evil

Charles Jacobs, President, American Anti-Slavery Group

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 5 September 2011]

HAITI: SUGAR SLAVES - Next time you add sugar to your coffee, think of Andre Prevot. A Haitian, Prevot met a man who promised him a good job nearby in the Dominican Republic (DR). But, as we've seen with the Asian slavers, this is a classic lure. "He took me across the border and sold me to the Dominican soldiers for $8," explains Prevot. Once in their custody, he suffered the fate of thousands of his countrymen who are forced against their will to cut cane for six or seven months — from December to June — for little or no money.

Though many Haitians work willingly in the Dominican sugar plantations (Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere), there is a perennial shortfall at harvest time. The State Sugar Council, known as the CEA, fills the gap with a system that violates nearly every internationally recognized labor code against forced labor. Although political turmoil in Haiti has put an end to cross-border recruiting, the enslavement of blacks continues.

 

 

Indonesia

Indonesia's Footwear Workers Too Thin For Aerobics

Charles Wallace, Los Angeles Times, Tangerang, 17 October 1992

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 6 September 2011]

Suyatmi, a shy, 20-year old factory worker, is too poor to know much about sneakers. She's never heard of Bo Jackson and is too skinny to care about aerobics.      Her world consists of a rented, 5-foot sqaure room in a shantytown where she sits on the concrete floor with three other young women.      Every day a t 7 a.m., Suyatmi begins work at P.T. Hardaya Aneka Shoes Industry, one of six companies in Indonesia making shoes for Nike Inc., the spectacurly successful U.S. sporting goods company. Her production "line" of 30 workers produces 350 pairs of Nike's glitzy footwear a day.      Suyatmi and her co-workers earn a base salary of 1,900 Indonesian rupiahs a day, the equivalent of $1.15. Working a six-day week, with a least two hours of overtime each day, she takes home about $17 per week. The company also gives her lunch and a bus ride to work.      "Some days it's hard," she said. "But I'm just happy to have a job."

 

 

Indonesia

Human Trafficking, Migrant Labor Often Linked in Indonesia

News Blaze, June 11, 2007 -- Source: U.S. Department of State

iipdigital.usembassy.gov/st/english/article/2007/06/20070607164452dybeekcm0.7253229.html#axzz3BKE2hiUo

[accessed 24 August 2014]

More than 2.5 million Indonesians from poorer regions support their families every year by traveling overseas seeking work as domestic servants and laborers. Most work in Malaysia and Saudi Arabia, but hundreds of thousands of others also can be found in Singapore, Japan, Syria, Kuwait, Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Some of these individuals find work through officially sanctioned recruiting agencies. But Susilo estimates that more than half of would-be migrant workers bypass these programs for the deceptive ease of working through less reputable recruiters who, like traffickers the world over, confiscate passports, trap would-be workers with exorbitant loans to travel abroad and force them into laboring in dangerous and abusive work environments in a futile effort to repay their unmanageable debts before sending money home to their families.

 

 

Japan

Forced Labor?  Male Migrant Workers In Japan Have It Tough

Suvendrini Kakuchi, Inter Press Service IPS, Tokyo, Jun 9, 2005

www.atimes.com/atimes/Japan/GF09Dh02.html

[accessed 16 February 2011]

"While the problems of human trafficking focuses on women forced into sexual slavery in Japan, there are many cases of coerced male labor in the country, a situation that still goes ignored and needs urgent attention," said Tomoyuki Yamaguchi, a counselor at the Asian Peoples' Friendship, a non-governmental organization (NGO) supporting migrant workers.

He points out that complaints by male workers sound very similar to those of trafficked women, such as low wages, long and exhausting working hours, and violence from their bosses.  The bulk of complaints are over unpaid overtime, sometimes running into years, and injuries in the workplace. The counselor said many of the workers were reluctant to confront their bosses for fear of being deported for violating their tourist visas.

 

 

Latvia

From Ballroom Dancer to Stripper: Surviving Chicago's sex slave trade Series: Sex and Sorrow: The Modern Slave Trade

Annie Sweeney, Crime Reporter, Chicago Sun Times, August 7, 2005

www.ipsn.org/organized_crime/prostitution/surviving_chicago.htm

[accessed 17 February 2011]

To Z, Mishulovich's offer was exhilarating.  It was also a lie -- something she discovered shortly after landing at O'Hare Airport.  Put up in a cramped apartment with other Latvian women, she was watched constantly, beaten and threatened with being sold as a prostitute. Her passport was taken away.  And the dancing? Really it was stripping. For maybe $20 a night.  She was a virtual slave -- a sex slave, a victim of "human trafficking."

 

 

Myanmar

Remarks at Swearing-in Ceremony

Mark P. Lagon, Director, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, Washington DC, July 9, 2007

2001-2009.state.gov/g/tip/rls/rm/07/88003.htm

[accessed 13 June 2013]

Last week in Southeast Asia, I met Aye Aye Win, a young Burmese woman who dared to search for work beyond her own tortured country. A recruiter painted a beautiful picture of work in a neighboring country. Aye Aye assumed substantial debt to cover up-front costs required by the recruiter for this job placement.  Together with some 800 Burmese migrants, many children, Aye Aye was "placed" in a shrimp farming and processing factory. But it wasn’t a job. It was a prison camp.

The isolated 10-acre factory was surrounded by steel walls, 15 feet tall with barbed wire fencing, located in the middle of a coconut plantation far from roads. Workers weren’t allowed to leave and were forbidden phone contact with any one outside. They lived in run-down wooden huts, with hardly enough to eat.  Aye Aye is a brave, daring soul. She tried to escape with three other women. But factory guards caught them and dragged them back to the camp. They were punished as an example to others, tied to poles in the middle of the courtyard, and refused food or water. Aye Aye told me how her now beautiful hair was shaved off as another form of punishment, to stigmatize her. And how she was beaten for trying to flee.  Beaten. Tortured. Starved. Humiliated. Is this not slavery??

 

 

Nigeria

Recruitment Firms as Agents of Forced Labour, Human Trafficking

ThisDayLive, Nigeria, 01 August 2012

www.thisdaylive.com/articles/recruitment-firms-as-agents-of-forced-labour-human-trafficking/121272/

[accessed 1 August 2012]

Allegations are mounting against recruitment agencies in the country for engaging in forced labour and human trafficking. Linda Eroke writes on the need for strict regulations and the promotion of recruitment practices that do not threaten the right of workers.

Although, Nigeria like most African countries is bedeviled by so many problems such as poverty, unemployment, insecurity and natural disaster, the problem of forced labour and human trafficking has continued to undermine the essence of living.  Every day, increasing number of men, women and children are trafficked from one city to neighbouring countries and across continents with promised of better life outside their comfort zones.  In the cause of searching for greener pasture, they are coerced into work they have not chosen and subjected to perpetual life in bondage. They work under strenuous conditions and do not receive the wage that was promised them.  The International Labour Organisation (ILO) described this group of people as victims of forced labour who have been trafficked into a situation from which they find it difficult to escape.

In Nigeria, there is a high demand for cheap and easily disposable labour as organisations, which are already over burden with high cost of operations engage the services of private recruitment agencies.  This is common in industries that are labour intensive such as agriculture, domestic work or construction. Most of these agents, unknown to many are traffickers who take advantage of the huge supply of cheap labour within and outside the shores of the country.  Though the ILO recognises the positive role played by Private Employment Agencies (PEAs) in national and global labour markets, it however called for strict regulations and the promotion of recruitment practices that do not threaten workers’ rights.

 

 

Poland - Italy

Human Trafficking Ring Raided in Italy

Associated Press AP, Rome, 19 July 2006

www.foxnews.com/printer_friendly_wires/2006Jul19/0,4675,ItalyHumanTrafficking,00.html

[accessed 2 September 2014]

"Gangsters working in Poland recruited people looking for seasonal jobs picking fruit and vegetables in Italy through announcements in local newspapers," Bienkowski told a news conference.  He said workers had to pay travel costs and a one-time work-finders fee of up to $280. But once in Italy, their situation quickly deteriorated. The workers were promised $6.30-$7.50 per hour before leaving, but received only $1.25 an hour after arriving, Bienkowski said.  They were quartered in barracks with horrible sanitary conditions and had to pay for food and board, which pushed most of them into debt.

 

 

Russia

Trafficking in Russia

Anti-Slavery International

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 11 September 2011]

CASE STUDY: SERGEY'S STORY - Sergey is 27 years old and from Perm in Russia. In 2001 he saw an advert in a local newspaper for a job agency recruiting construction workers to work in Spain. The salary offered was US$1,200 per month. This was much more than his monthly salary of just $200 and more than he could ever hope to earn in Perm. He applied to the agency who booked his plane ticket to Madrid on the condition that he would pay back the money when he started work.

On arrival in Spain, Sergey was picked up by a person from the "agency" who took his passport. He was taken to Portugal and forced to work on a construction site without pay for several months. The site was surrounded by barbed wire. Without his passport he was afraid that the Portugese authorities would arrest him. One day Sergey managed to escape and begged his way to Germany. Because he did not have a passport the German authorities arrested him. He stated the police beat him and took away what little money he had before deporting him to Russia.

 

 

South Korea

South Korean labour laws reduce migrant workers to slaves

Mostly Water, 16 March 2004

newsattic.com/d/hl/south_korean_labour_laws_reduce_migrant_workers_to_slaves.html

[accessed 3 September 2014]

To migrant workers, the EPS is a law that allows slavery. According to the new law, migrant workers can work in South Korea for only three years and for only one employer. Since migrant workers cannot change their work place, the employer basically has complete control over the wages and working conditions of migrant workers; thus these workers are bound to the employer like slaves.

 

 

USA

Indian workers' struggle shines light on human trafficking, slave labor

Sunil Freeman, Party for Socialism and Liberation PSL, July 4, 2008

www2.pslweb.org/site/News2?JServSessionIdr009=v29yt8h827.app5b&page=NewsArticle&id=9509&news_iv_ctrl=1261

[accessed 9 January 2011]

The plight of immigrant Indian workers who were deceived into virtual slavery has brought attention to the vile practice of human trafficking.  Indian workers protest slave-like conditions before the Department of Justice, Washington, D.C., June 11.  The workers took jobs with Signal International to work on the U.S. Gulf Coast following the devastation of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. The Indian workers were told they would receive "green cards," allowing them permanent legal residence in the United States. Many who left their families behind in search of better wages had been told they would be able to bring their relatives.  The promises were all lies. Instead of receiving permanent legal status, the workers—who had paid fees of up to $20,000 to Signal—received 10-month H-2B temporary worker visas.  The workers were essentially trapped, and their employers knew it. Their documents were stolen and wages were withheld. For all practical purposes, slavery had returned to Louisiana.

 

 

USA

An American Nightmare

Dan Rather, Huffington Post, 11/10/11

www.huffingtonpost.com/dan-rather/an-american-nightmare_b_1086537.html

[accessed December 8, 2011 ]

Before coming to the United States, Signal's recruiters forced the workers to pay up to $20,000 in recruiting fees, a fortune for a middle-class Indian. They mortgaged homes and sold family jewelry, expecting that they would make the money back and then some. But even with Signal's competitive wages, the workers were unable to climb out of the deep hole of debt. And the workers say this allowed Signal to keep them in a perpetual state of indentured servitude.

And on top of all this, the workers were forced to pay more than $1,000-a-month in rent, or about a third of their monthly salary -- whether they lived in the camps or chose to rent an apartment elsewhere. The company says the housing was provided as a service to workers, since Katrina had destroyed so many local apartment buildings. But the workers said there was no shortage of nearby housing that was much cheaper and cleaner than what Signal was providing.

And then there were the promised Green Cards: they never came.

 

 

USA

Human trafficking cases increase in El Paso

Louie Gilot, Libertas, November 12, 2006

libertasuiuc.blogspot.com/2006/11/human-trafficking-cases-increase-in-el_12.html

[accessed 8 January 2011]

Gardes showed the photograph of a field worker standing on top of a large farm truck -- a scene common across the Southwest. His name is Ricardo, she said. He was smuggled across the border in Arizona and abandoned in the desert for eight days with only three days' worth of food and water. He was found by another smuggler who offered to guide him, for a fee. When Ricardo couldn't pay, the smuggler sold him to a Florida labor contractor for $1,100.  This became Ricardo's debt. He worked in a field for $80 a week to repay it. At the same time, his trafficker overcharged him for rent and other necessities. Gardes said he was never meant to be able to repay the debt.  One day, another trafficking victim escaped, was recaptured and was beaten in front of Ricardo and the others. "At this point, Ricardo realized this was really slavery," Gardes said.

 

 

Vietnam

Boycott "Blood Cashews" From Vietnam

Press Release, BPSOS - Boat People SOS, June 13, 2012

[accessed 27 December 2012]

At a recent hearing before the US Congress, Dr. Nguyen Dinh Thang, Executive Director of Boat People SOS (BPSOS), reported that Vietnamese prisoners, including political prisoners, have similarly been subjected to forced labor:   "One Montagnard, jailed from 2002 through 2009, had to do this for 7 years.  His hands were injured by the caustic resin from the cashew nuts because he was not allowed to wear gloves."

Speaking for CAMSA, Mr. Vu Quoc Dung, Secretary General of Germany-based International Society for Human Rights, denounces the dangerous cashew work in prisons such as the Z30A Prison in Xuan Loc, where political prisoners are forced each to process 32 kg of class B cashews daily. Some prisoners have developed blindness as a result. Many have suffered injuries to their faces and hands. Those failing to meet the assigned quota would be beaten with a whip and kicked. Political prisoners who oppose forced labor have reportedly been shackled and held in solitary confinement.

 

 

# General #

21 million people are now victims of forced labour, ILO says

International Labour Organisation ILO News, Geneva, 01 June 2012

www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/press-and-media-centre/news/WCMS_181961/lang--en/index.htm

[accessed 5 June 2012]

Nearly 21 million people are victims of forced labour across the world, trapped in jobs which they were coerced or deceived into and which they cannot leave, according to the ILO’s new global estimate.

FORCED LABOUR IN NUMBERS -

Three out of every 1,000 people worldwide are in forced labour today.

18.7 million (90 %) are exploited in the private economy, by individuals or enterprises. Of these, 4.5 million (22 per cent) are victims of forced sexual exploitation and 14.2 million (68 per cent) are victims of forced labour exploitation in economic activities, such as agriculture, construction, domestic work or manufacturing.

2.2 million (10%) are in state-imposed forms of forced labour, for example in prisons, or in work imposed by the state military or by rebel armed forces.

5.5 million (26 %) are below 18 years.

 

 

# General #

Behind the figures: Faces of forced labour

International Labour Organisation ILO News, Geneva, 01 June 2012

www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/press-and-media-centre/news/WCMS_181915/lang--en/index.htm

[accessed 5 June 2012]

A way out of debt bondage - The majority of bonded labourers are in Asia and Latin America. They pledge their labour against a loan or a wage advance. An accident or sickness can oblige workers to borrow more money, which plunges them into a vicious cycle of indebtedness, passing the debt from generation to generation.

 

 

# General #

ILO Global Estimate of Forced Labour - Results and methodology [PDF]

International Labour Office, Special Action Programme to Combat Forced Labour (SAP-FL). - Geneva: ILO, 2012

ISBN: 9789221264125; 9789221264132

www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_norm/---declaration/documents/publication/wcms_182004.pdf

[accessed 5 June 2012]

In 2005, the International Labour Office (ILO) published its first global estimate of forced labour.1 The estimate (a minimum of 12.3 million persons in forced labour at any point in time in the period 1995-2004) received considerable attention by governmental and non-governmental organizations and in the media. It has since been widely cited as the most authoritative estimate of the largely hidden, and therefore difficult to measure, phenomenon of forced labour. The estimate served its main purpose – to raise global awareness of the magnitude of the crime of modern day forced labour, and to stimulate action at all levels against it.

The capture-recapture methodology applied was also subject to scrutiny, particularly by the academic community and certain government agencies. A number of issues were raised concerning the underlying assumptions of the methodology and the procedure by which the extrapolation was made.

The purpose of the present document is to describe in detail the revised methodology used to generate the 2012 ILO global estimate of forced labour, covering the period from 2002 to 2011, and the main results obtained.

 

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