Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Labor Trafficking News from October

Throughout the month there are many cases or stories that break regarding forced labor. They are usually not on the front pages of our newspapers, rather they are buried deep and sometimes are only accessible through the internet. These are some of the stories both headline articles and those that were not from October.

In their Fourth Annual Report, the Payson Center for International Development at the University of Tulane reports that not enough is being done to prevent suppliers from using child labor within their supply chains. Child labor (worst forms), forced labor and labor trafficking still occur within the industry and include abuses such as physical, sexual and verbal harassment along with restricted movement and children being sent to farms separate from their parents and guardians. While some companies have worked to clean-up their supply chains there is at least one company notably absent. Read more

Details about the first case involving charges of labor rather than sex trafficking in Canada began to come out at the beginning of October. A group of 19 or more victims were lured from Hungry to work in Canada. Once they arrived they were forced to work for a construction company and were controlled through threats of harm to either their families or to themselves. The workers were forced to apply for government support. The traffickers would take this money once it arrived. Ten members of a family are being charged in the crime. Read more

Authorities arrested 23 people and were looking for more in connection with a Chinese human trafficking ring in places such as New York City and Long Island. Victims paid up to $75,000 to come to the US for work. The victims families were threatened and required to pay off these fees while the victims were living in poor conditions and were forced to work in "slave-like conditions" in restaurants. Read more

A man was convicted in Missouri for his role in a scheme which spread across 14 states. It involved the recruitment of illegal aliens to work in places such as hotels. The employees were lead to believe the conditions of employment would be different. Once in the US the victims were threatened with deportation. The man was not charged with forced labor but was convicted under RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) charges. Read more

Additional charges have been brought against the Sou brothers in the Hawaii Aloun Farm case involving the 44 workers they brought to the US from Thailand. They have been charged with five counts of forced labor for threatening workers. There are also two counts of document (passport) confiscation, and two counts for hiding workers from the authorities after their visas were expired in order to force them to work. Read more

A potential case of child abuse/labor is being investigated in Britain. While it is still early in the investigation it appears that 8 children were being forced to work on a farm in near freezing weather while inadequately dressed. The children were between 9 and 15 years old. Read more

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed the "California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010" on the 18th of October. The Act requires manufacturers and retailers within California to detail what they are doing to ensure there is no slavery within their supply chains. This must be posted on the company's website. Read more

While a lot of attention is given to child labor in Uzbekistan's cotton industry, very little attention is paid to the forced labor of adults in the same industry. People from many different industries including police officers and teachers were reportedly being forced to pick cotton during this year's harvest particularly because prices for cotton are currently high. Uzbeki news sources reported several abuses related to people who refused to work. Teachers were beaten in effort to compel them to work and a whole village had its power cut to punish a man who refused to work. According to the report even the sick and old are being compelled to pick cotton. Of the 3,400,000 tons of cotton that was picked China is expected to receive at least 100,000 tons Read more

2 comments:

  1. Human trafficking is a global issue the tragedy of human trafficking is thousand of young girls and boys are sold into modern-day slavery. watch these stories of the survivors of this hideous crime the modern day slavery

    http://www.cultureunplugged.com/play/479

    ReplyDelete
  2. excellent roundup.

    ReplyDelete