Monday, September 26, 2011

Tracking down the slaves who work for you

Our world has about 27,000,000 million slaves – men, women, and children -- who are forced to work without compensation in the vast production and distribution chain upon which ordinary consumers are inevitably dependent for everyday products. That is the conclusion reached by a U.S. State Department–funded project announced on September 23.

The project reveals the extent of the link: slave labor is used, for example, to mine mica, the mineral used to provide sparkle in cosmetics, and coltan, a component in electronics, and to make products like soccer balls from China and cotton from Uzbekistan.

Besides, through a newly launched Website,,the project encourages corporations to investigate their wide-ranging supply chains -- their contractors and subcontractors -- for use of slave labor.

The initiative was announced at a New York City news conference by Ambassador at Large CdeBaca of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. More details can be found on Facebook at

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