Monday, February 06, 2006

The American Anti-Slavery Group, works to abolish modern-day slavery!


Contrary to popular belief, slavery didn’t end with Abraham Lincoln in 1863. Experts estimate that today there are 27 million people enslaved around the world. It’s happening in countries on all six inhabited continents. And yes, that includes the United States. The CIA estimates 14,500 to 17,000 victims are trafficked into the “Land of the Free” every year.

Why hasn’t more been done to end a dehumanizing, universally condemned practice? One challenge is that slavery today takes on myriad, subtler forms than it did during the Atlantic Slave Trade — including sex trafficking, debt bondage, forced domestic or agricultural labor, and chattel slavery — making it tougher to identify and eradicate.

* Slavery today is defined as forced labor without pay under threat of violence.
* 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked internationally every year. Approximately 80% of them are women and children.
* Slavery was officially abolished worldwide at the 1927 Slavery Convention, yet it continues to thrive thanks to the complicity of some governments and the ignorance of much of the world.
* In the 2000 Refugee Report, “Trafficking in Women and Children: A Contemporary Manifestation of Slavery,” former secretary of state Madeleine Albright calls human trafficking “the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world.”
* Slavery is an extremely profitable, international industry. Experts estimate trafficking in the US yields $9 billion every year. Around the world, trafficking in women for commercial sex purposes nets $6 billion per year. The trade of human flesh is so lucrative that authorities complain that even as they close in on one smuggling ring in the US, another one pops up.
* The four most common types of slavery are: chattel slavery, debt bondage, forced labor, and sexual slavery.

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