As of 2016, over 40 million people from every part of the globe were victims of modern slavery.
“Modern slavery” is an umbrella term that covers forced labour, forced marriage and human trafficking. The common thread is that a person is being exploited, and cannot refuse or leave due to threats, violence, coercion, deception, manipulation and/or the abuse of power.
People in modern slavery
16 million people around the world are victims of forced labour in the private sector (not including sexual exploitation). Exploitation is most prevalent in domestic work, construction and manufacturing.
5 million people are currently victims of forced commercial sexual exploitation. Over 99% are female and more than 20% are children.
Over 4 million people are victims of forced labour imposed by state authorities.
Over 15 million people are living in a forced marriage. Women and girls are 84% of victims. An estimated 37% of victims were children at the time of marriage.
As of 2016, there were almost 152 million children, aged 5 to 17, in child labour across the world.
Not all work performed by children is child labour. International standards define “child labour” as work that is hazardous to a child’s health and development, demands too many hours and/or is performed by children who are too young. Usually, child labour interferes with a child’s right to education and to healthy childhood play.
Children in child labour
Almost 73 million children are performing hazardous work that puts their health, safety, moral development and, in extreme cases, even their lives at risk.
108 million children in child labour are working in agriculture, mainly subsistence and commercial farming and herding livestock.
Over 36 million children in child labour aged 5 to 14 are completely outside the education system. Those who can attend school tend to perform poorly compared to their non-working peers.
Over 84 million children in child labour live in middle income countries.