Please see below selected recent servitude-related change.
- Approximately 12.5 million people were enslaved and taken from Africa, according to a widely accepted figure from the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database, but some estimates argue that as many as 20 million people were enslaved.
- As the US continued to debate paying reparations to Black Americans over slavery, Quartz looked at how reparations would actually work and examined the economic, logistical, and ethical questions underpinning reparations policies to understand how they might be eventually put into practice, from the responsibility corporations have to make up for a history of racism, to what the countries like the UK owe former colonies.
- The long term societal impact of colonial rule is ubiquitous. It is present in the way our institutions are set up. It is present, whether we like it or not, in how we, as individuals, view the world and other people, argued IAI. adding that we need to "decolonise our perspective".
- The global virus crisis put millions of children at risk of being pushed into child labour, the United Nations warned. This could mark the first rise of the practice in two decades. "As the pandemic wreaks havoc on family incomes, without support, many could resort to child labour," the International Labour Organisation warned. Economists predicted the pandemic would lead to a serious economic recession around the globe.The worldwide number of child labourers has dropped to 152 million from 246 million in 2000, according to the agency.
- Despite vast improvements in the global ﬁght against modern day slavery over the past decade, more than 45 million people remain victims of forced labour worldwide, with 58 per cent of those from ﬁve countries alone. While government intervention can have the biggest immediate impact, businesses have their own role to play. Ensuring transparency and accountability across globalised supply chains - from direct providers to indirect third-party sourcing – is key, and the procurement function is pivotal to not only safeguarding ﬁrms from big ﬁnes, but helping nations eradicate modern slavery.
- Despite vast improvements in the global ﬁght against modern day slavery over the past decade, more than 45 million people remain victims of forced labour worldwide, with 58% of those from ﬁve countries alone. While government intervention can have the biggest immediate impact, businesses have their own role to play. Ensuring transparency and accountability across globalised supply chains – from direct providers to indirect third-party sourcing – is key, and the procurement function is pivotal to not only safeguarding ﬁrms from big ﬁnes, but helping nations eradicate modern slavery once and for all,
- Marking the Year of Return - the 400th anniversary of the beginning of the US slave trade - Ghana granted citizenship to 126 African Americans and Afro-Caribbeans in 2019 as part of an effort to encourage slaves' descendants to return. Three quarters of the West African slave "dungeons" that held slaves before their forced journey to the Americas were based in what is now Ghana.
- Today, every country in the world has constitutionally banned slavery. Three, however, continue to violate the UN’s Universal Declaration on Human Rights by compelling citizens to work for no pay. North Korea is ranked the worst. The Uzbek and Turkmen cotton industries are also dependent on forced labour.
- More than 45 million people remain victims of forced labour worldwide. While government intervention can have the biggest immediate impact, businesses have their own role to play. Ensuring transparency and accountability across globalised supply chains - from direct providers to indirect third-party sourcing - is key, and the procurement function is pivotal to not only safeguarding ﬁrms from big ﬁnes, but helping nations eradicate modern slavery once and for all.
- Figures from the International Labour Organisation, released most recently in 2017, revealed that more than 40 million people worldwide were in modern slavery in 2016, including around 25 million in forced labour. Of those in forced labour, some 16 million were being exploited in the private sector. Furthermore, there were more than 152 million estimated victims of child labour, almost half of whom were aged between 5 and 11.
- More than two centuries ago, in 1808, the US outlawed the importation of slaves, but the practice continued for years. Indeed it wasn’t until 1860 that the last known ship carrying enslaved Africans to the US set sail. Recently, researchers found that vessel’s remains in Alabama. The discovery, noted National Geographic, could lead to a national slave ship memorial - which could in turn help America deal with an ugly part of its history.
- Marriott announced that it had successfully trained half a million staff to recognise and respond to signs of human trafficking. The online and classroom-based training programme has been translated to 16 languages and is tailored to specific hotel roles, such as front-desk clerk, bartender, and housekeeper. Marriott said that since the program’s inception in 2017, it had led to a number of young people being removed from compromised situations.
- The world didn’t meet the International Labour Organisation’s goal of eliminating the “worst forms” of child labor by 2016. But the rate of decline - approximately a 40 percent reduction from 2000 to 2016 is marked and continuing.
- Raconteur warned that, despite vast improvements in the global ﬁght against modern day slavery over the past decade, more than 45 million people remain victims of forced labour worldwide, with 58 per cent of those from ﬁve countries alone.
- Modern slavery and forced labour are profound problems found to exist in more than 165 countries across both the developing and developed world. Due to poor procurement practices and unaccountable supply partners, some companies have unknowingly participated in unethical supply chains and, in the process, are exacerbating issues surrounding modern slavery.
- Financial institutions are not immune from the scourge of modern slavery in the form of human trafficking. Beyond the human cost, human trafficking can present money laundering and other corporate liability exposure. Recognising this issue of concern, the Financial Action Task Force and the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering published a report – Financial Flows from Human Trafficking – linking money laundering risks and human trafficking.
- Art, Freedom and Technology is an iAI debate examining the increasingly troubling questions: have we become enslaved to technology? (A comedian noted recently - without a smile - that if you don;t have pay for an app, then you probably are the product.)
- The European Union is working with Libyan coastguards to reduce the number of migrants crossing the Mediterranean Sea. But many of those intercepted end up in detention centres in Libya, where some migrants say they are used as slaves, reported the BBC earlier in 2018.
- According to the FT, modern slavery campaigners are now turning to online exploitation.
- More than 2.6 million people in North Korea, or over 10 percent of the population, live under slavery, the highest number for any country in the world according to the 2018 Global Slavery Index. The report’s definition of slavery includes victims of traditional slavery, human trafficking, forced labor, debt bondage, forced or servile marriage, and the sale and exploitation of children.
- Automation in Asian markets may lead to the rise of slavery as displaced workers without the skills to adapt or the cushion of social security will have to compete for a diminishing supply of low-paid, low-skilled work in what will likely be an increasingly exploitative environment, warned The Japan Times.
- See also: Forced labour in the UK: ‘I tried to escape . . . they cut my finger off.
- Most people now look with shame to an era when a human being could legally be bought and sold, their worth tied solely to the profit their work would yield. In the mid-19th century, before slavery was abolished in the southern states of the US, a “prime male field hand” could be purchased for about $1100 – roughly $30,000 in today’s money. Other human beings were bought and sold for far less.
- More than half of the world’s estimated 215 million child labourers are engaged in hazardous work which puts them risk of injury, illness or death, the UN International Labour Organisation said in a new report.
- In a TED talk, Kevin Bales explained the business of modern slavery, a multibillion-dollar economy that underpins some of the worst industries on earth. His main findings:
- It's only Iceland and Greenland where we can't find any cases of enslavement around the world.
- There were about 27 million people in slavery in 2010, double the number taken from Africa before slavery was abolished.
- However, this is the smallest fraction of the global population to ever be in slavery.
- Likewise, the 40 billion dollars that they generate into the global economy each year is the tiniest proportion of the global economy to ever be represented by slave labour.
- The average price of a human being today, around the world, is about $90.
- The estimated cost of not just freedom, but sustainable freedom for the entire 27 million people in the planet in slavery is something like 10.8 billion dollars.
- As Bales concludes, "if we can't use our intellectual power to end slavery, there is one last question, are we truly free?"
- Others wonder whether there are still "invisible armies" of slaves in rich western countries.