< Back

Introduction to the Modern Slavery Campaign

It is estimated that almost 46 million people worldwide are living in modern slavery, 70% of whom are women and girls.

What is modern slavery?

Modern slavery can take many forms, including human trafficking, forced labour, domestic servitude, and criminal, sexual and child exploitation.

Totalling at an estimated 45.8 million people, this criminal industry is generating billions of pounds in illegal profits every year, making forced labour the second largest international crime.

Read on to find out more about the different forms that modern slavery can take, the severity of the situation and what can be done to tackle each particular instance.

What are the different types of modern slavery?

‘Slavery’ is an umbrella term for activities involved when one person obtains or holds another person in compelled service. This can include forced labour, child slavery, domestic slavery, forced marriage and human trafficking.

  • Forced labour. Any work which people are forced to do against their will. According to the United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) there are 24.9 million people currently in forced labour.
  • Live-in migrant domestic workers. This group of people are particularly vulnerable to exploitation because, confined to a private home, they are isolated from protections offered in a regular workplace. This makes it easier for an employer to demand long hours, threaten to denounce the worker to immigration authorities, even commit assault without fear of detection and means workers are isolated from protection(s) offered in a regular workplace.
  • Forced marriage. According to the ILO, there were an estimated 15.4 million people in forced marriage in 2016. Marriage can be defined as ‘forced’ if the following three elements are present: If either party hasn’t given their free and informed consent. If either party is being subjected to control and a sense of ownership. If either party cannot realistically leave or end the marriage.
  • Human trafficking. The act of recruiting or transferring a person by means of coercion, abduction or deception for the purpose of exploitation. Although most people assume sexual exploitation to be the most common reason for trafficking people, it is in fact for forced labour. People are also trafficked for other forms of exploitation, such as the removal of their organs for transplants.

What is being done?

Modern slavery is a global crime worth billions of pounds annually and we each have a duty to noy only look but to see what is really happening around us and take action.

There are many charities/organisations who are already doing their part to address the issue, including (but not limited to):

  • Unseen. Their campaign ‘Be Seen, Be Heard’ encourages people to join and help fundraise to support their efforts in providing support for vulnerable male, female and child survivors of modern slavery and human trafficking.
  • Guardians. A community of monthly givers whose passion and financial commitment is enabling and empowering Hope for Justice’s life-changing anti-trafficking activations around the world.
  • Anti-slavery. You can become a member of the movement by donating a one off payment or more regularly to support Anti-Slavery in continuing to free more people from slavery every year.

How has COVID-19 impacted modern slavery?

As more families fall into extreme poverty, children in poor and disadvantaged communities are at much greater risk of child labour, child marriage and child trafficking. In fact, the global gains in reducing child labour are likely to be reversed for the first time in 20 years.

The coronavirus lockdown can be incredibly triggering to victims of trafficking, for whom having limited freedom of movement brings back difficult memories of being under the control of their traffickers.

What can you do right now?

With your help, we can build momentum for real, long-lasting improvement. Download the now-u app to make a start and become part of a community dedicated to change. Download the now-u app to join a community of people fighting for change.

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about this upcoming now-u campaign. In addition to actions proposed for our users, the now-u team will also contact politicians, companies and public figures asking them to support our campaign.

We’re doing our bit, now-u.

download app from apple store
download app from apple store

Community Interest Company (12709184) and Charitable Incorporated Organisation (1196568)