There are an estimated 27 million slaves today. There are more slaves at this moment than at any point in history. In addition to this, the average price of a slave today is about $90 USD, when the historical average is about $40,000 USD. The price of a human being has collapsed at the point when the number of slaves reaches historical heights. The United States spends an average of $6000 a second on it‘s military industrial complex, a rate at which it could free every slave in about 4.5 days. Of course, the purchase of every enslaved person‘s freedom only reifies the system that enslaved them, increasing their market value, as the purchase is a sign of increased demand. On an ethical level, the purchase of enslaved persons‘ freedom does nothing to combat the ideologies that make slavery permissible and normalized.
What is Trafficking in Persons?
The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs. The consent of a victim of trafficking in persons to the intended exploitation set forth [above] shall be irrelevant where any of the means set forth [above] have been used.
Of course, this definition does not encompass the full range of exploitation, which includes but is not limited to:
- illegal (transnational) adoption
- sexual exploitation
- coerced labour
- child brides
- recruitment of children into armed conflict
- forced begging
- removal of organs
Contributing factors to the vulnerability of victims of trafficking in persons include: Continue reading