"The UN Voluntary Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery helps restore the human rights and dignity of thousands of victims and their families by awarding grants to projects providing rehabilitation services. I urge Member States, businesses, private foundation and other donors to increase their contributions. Together, we can accelerate our efforts and rid the world of this heinous practice."
- Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
The International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, December 2nd, marks the date of the adoption, by the General Assembly, of the United Nations Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others, December 2, 1949).
The focus of this day is on eradicating contemporary forms of slavery, such as trafficking in persons, sexual exploitation, the worst forms of child labor, forced marriage, and the forced recruitment of children for use in armed conflict. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), there are currently an estimated 21 million forced labor victims worldwide, creating $150 billion in illegal profits in the private economy each year. ILO has adopted a new legally binding protocol designed to strengthen global efforts to eliminate forced labor, which took effect November 2016. The 50 for Freedom Campaign aims to persuade at least 50 countries to ratify the Forced Labor Protocol by 2018.
Facts and Figures:
- Almost 21 million people are victims of forced labor – 11.4 million women and girls and 9.5 million men and boys.
- Almost 19 million victims are exploited by private individuals or enterprises and over 2 million by the state or rebel groups.
- Domestic work, agriculture, construction, manufacturing and entertainment are among the sectors most concerned.
- Migrant workers and indigenous people are particularly vulnerable to forced labor.
Source: UN website