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  • Writer's pictureGrace Episcopal Church

The Global Issue Of Modern Day Slavery

Slavery exists everywhere, including the US. Slavery is illegal in almost every country but many people around the world do not live under rule of law. Millions of men, women and children are trapped in modern-day slavery around the world. In India, entire families are enslaved in labor trafficking in brick kilns, rice mills, and garment factories working up to 20 hours a day. In the Dominican Republic, women and children are lured into sex trafficking with promises of school or a good-paying job. In the Philippines, children as young as two are sexually abused live for anyone in the world to watch through online sexual exploitation of children.

There are an estimated 50 million people held in slavery today. An estimated 90% of labor trafficking takes place in the private economy—homes, business and supply chains. Human trafficking generates about $150 billion a year—with two-thirds coming from commercial sexual exploitation.

For over 25 years the International Justice Mission (IJM) has worked to end slavery and violence against the poor. Their goal is to prevent it from happening in the first place. IJM and their partners collaborate with local authorities to serve individual survivors of violence, pursue sustainable improvements in the justice system and build communities where all people can expect to be safe and protected.

This model has been successful. Where IJM has worked with local government and community agencies, the incidence of slavery has decreased. Sex trafficking has been reduced from 75-86%. The Bureau of International Labor Affairs reports a “moderate” decrease in forced child labor in Ghana where IJM has worked with local fisherman to end the use of child slaves in the fishing industry.

We do have a way to end slavery in our lifetime and if we persist, and add our prayers, advocacy and support, we will see this end. There is not just hope, we actually can see the end.

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