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Halcyon's 52:52:52 campaign on this site and on Twitter will start in late 2020. It will help you address 52 issues with 52 responses over 52 weeks.

Part consultancy, part thinktank, part social enterprise, Halcyon helps you prepare for and respond to personal, organisational and societal change.

A Mundane Comedy is Halcyon's new book. Extracts will appear on this site and on social media during late 2020. Please get in touch with any questions about the book or related Halcyon services.

Halcyon monitors change for more than 150 key elements of life.

What's Changing? - Servitude



Please see below selected recent servitude-related change.


See also: 


In figures: 


October 2020


June 2020

  • 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.


May 2020


January 2020

  • 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,


December 2019

  • 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.


November 2019


August 2019


June 2019


May 2019

  • 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.


February 2019

  • 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.


December 2018


October 2018


September 2018


August 2018


July 2018

  • 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.


Pre 2018

  • 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.