Coherence or fragmentation? Towards joint action against forced labour, human trafficking and slavery
By Beate Andrees, Head of Special Action Programme to combat Forced Labour, ILO Geneva, 18 April 2014
In the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, hundred thousands of women and men from Asia were recruited to work on plantations, to build railways, roads and ports of the New World and in European colonies. Some were lured into promising jobs abroad, others were simply kidnapped. They signed contracts which kept them in bondage for years, some for the rest of their lives. Most never returned home and many perished during their journey or while working in dangerous and arduous conditions overseas. This abusive system of labour recruitment was called “indentured labour”; today, we call it trafficking in human beings.
Such is the change in international law and moral consciousness. What seemed acceptable 150 years ago is a crime today. With the adoption of the UN Protocol to Suppress, Prevent and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children in 2000, States ...