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Half of the world’s victims of slavery live in the Commonwealth: What can be done about it?

Speech delivered by Dame Sara Thornton, Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner, at the Annual Commonwealth Day Westminster Seminar 

Scale of the issue and role of the Commonwealth

Modern slavery and human trafficking is a global challenge affecting every country in the world. According to the Global Slavery Index, there were an estimated 40.3 million people living in modern slavery on any given day in 2016.  The report also identifies a series of interrelated factors which create vulnerability and opportunity for slavery – governance issues, lack of basic needs, conflict, inequality and I will add climate change.

Vulnerability is then exploited by those motivated by greed or economic opportunism.  It is estimated that human trafficking is a business worth $150 billion annually.


COMMONWEALTH DAY 2020 ANNUAL LECTURE

Half of the world’s victims of slavery live in the Commonwealth:
What can be done about it?

Date: 9 March 2020 | Time: 10:30 to 12:30 | Venue: Committee Room G, Palace of Westminster

Host: The Rt Hon Baroness Prashar of Runnymede CBE, CEC Parliamentary Patron

While a third of the world’s population are Commonwealth citizens, according to the Global Slavery Index a staggering 55% of those currently enslaved reside in Commonwealth countries. This means that the Commonwealth is in a unique position to help significantly reduce slavery in the world.

As the statistics show, no country is exempt from the risks and incidence of modern slavery. Yet, it thrives in countries where governments fail to protect children, women and men from discrimination, exploitation and abuse, and allow businesses – however unscrupulous – to operate with impunity. All countries are bound by international law to make forced and child labour illegal.


60th Anniversary Conference

SAVE THE DATE

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60th Anniversary Conference

Date: Friday, 17th January 2020 | Venue: Delegates' Lounge, Marlborough House, Pall Mall, London SW1Y 5HX 

Time: 14:00 followed by Reception at 17:30

 

For further information, please click the flyer HERE