We often talk about slavery as if it was a thing of the past–a horror from another era, perpetrated by people who have no resemblance to us. But the truth is that slave labor is still alive and well. Your closet is likely full of clothes made through forced labor.
It involves poor people in developing countries trying to find work at clothing and shoe factories and finding themselves exploited.
An estimated 60 million to 75 million people are employed in this global sector.
Global free trade agreements have made it easy for brands to make their products in places where labor is cheaper, then transport them across the world.
Unethical recruitment agencies often take advantage of poor, desperate people by securing them jobs in exchange for exorbitant recruitment fees, which will come out of the worker’s salary. They may withhold a worker’s passport or other official documents until the fee is paid. And if they compound interest on the fee, a worker may never make enough money to pay it back, rendering them a lifelong slave.
HOTAN, China (AP) — Barbed wire and hundreds of cameras ring a massive compound of more than 30 dormitories, schools, warehouses and workshops in China’s far west. Dozens of armed officers and a growling Doberman stand guard outside.
A guard tower and barbed wire fences are seen around a facility in the Kunshan Industrial Park in Artux in western China's Xinjiang region. Behind locked gates, men and women are sewing sportswear that can end up on U.S.
“American companies importing from those places should know those products are made by people being treated like slaves.”
This is one of a growing number of internment camps in the Xinjiang region, where by some estimates 1 million Muslims are detained, forced to give up their language and their religion and subject to political indoctrination. Now, the Chinese government is also forcing some detainees to work in manufacturing, food and service industries, in what activists call "black factories."
“We’re making our contribution to eradicating poverty,” Wu told the AP
Edited by Rogerdodger, 17 December 2018 - 10:50 PM.