International Labour Organisation

The only tripartite U.N. agency, since 1919 the ILO brings together governments, employers and workers of 187 member States , to set labour standards, develop policies and devise programmes promoting decent work for all women and men. It focuses on importance of cooperation between governments and employers’ and workers’ organizations in fostering social and economic progress.


Modern Day Slavery - Forced Labour

Slavery is a concept most people consider foreign in this day and age even though unfortunately it did not end with abolition in the 19th century. The practice is still prevalent today in one form or another across the world and impacts every level of society. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO) Forced Labor Convention of 1930, forced or compulsory labor is: "All work or service which is exacted from any person under the threat of a penalty and for which the person has not offered himself or herself voluntarily" Despite near universal ratification of both Forced Labor Conventions the problem is still very far off from being solved. The ILO reported in 2017 that almost 25 million are still trapped in forced labor.

Forced labor can be found in various forms, from debt bondage to forced prostitution and labour. The most common factor is poverty. Victims are in need and extremely vulnerable with little to no knowledge of their rights. In some countries, people are still born into slavery. This guide starts off by explaining the problem of forced labor itself. It goes on to highlight links between forced labor and human trafficking as well as child labor. There is also a list of case studies of countries most affected by the problem. Finally the guide looks back at past efforts taken by the global community to tackle the problem.

Study Guide