When we talk about slavery, descriptions of what the phenomenon used to be over the course of history come to mind. What is often missed is the fact that slavery still exists in the world today, albeit in a different form. Modern day slavery sees around 40.3 million people living and working as slaves in many parts of the world, according to the figures published by the International Labour Organization of the UN.

These are serious numbers and the issue needs to be brought to light. Research needs to be done to spread the knowledge on human trafficking and modern slavery. There are some good academic papers on human trafficking that show how it is affecting so many people worldwide. Going through some free essay samples on human trafficking is a good idea if you would like to know some more facts about the issue. Education on this topic is one of the first steps to curb it.

Once you have gone through some examples and you know what the slaves working under forced labor have to go through, you will develop better learning on the matter. Such learning is crucial if this issue is to be highlighted and rectified over the years to come.

How Many Are There And What Do They Do?

Around the world, there are estimated to be 40.3 million victims shackled in some sort of slavery. 24.9 million of these are victims of forced labor. This means that such people are working under threat or intimidation, without their own will. A majority of these people, around 16 million, work as cleaners, make clothes, pick vegetables and fruits, mine for minerals, and work on a lot of everyday things we use on a regular basis. Most modern day slavery affects women and young girls. They combine to make up for 71% of the total slaves working today. 25% of the total slaves are made up of children.

 What Is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking is one of the ways in which people are enslaved. It is not possible to simply ‘buy’ or ‘sell’ a person into slavery like it was years ago. These days, people coerce, force, trick, or abduct other people and then sell them into slavery. This often happens in the form of forced marriage or sex work. A lot of the time, people who are struggling for work are led to believe by traffickers that they have been offered a good job. The traffickers then transport the victims to another country or city and then force them into debt bondage.

In modern times, a lot of traffickers employ the use of social media and other technology to find people they can exploit. They target children as they are the most vulnerable ones on social media and also those people who are actively applying for jobs and waiting for a response.


How Did COVID-19 Affect Human Trafficking?

As one can expect, the trend of human trafficking is estimated to have increased rapidly during the pandemic. As many people around the world lost their jobs, the risk for exploitation at the hands of the traffickers increased manifold. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime warned that this difficult time would put millions of people at risk of being enslaved. 


As the world goes through this tough time, the people who are vulnerable are at a higher risk than ever before. A lot of research is being done by the UN and other agencies on modern slavery trends while they try to fight the ever-increasing trend of human trafficking. It is up to each one of us to be aware of such activities if they take place around us. If you see anyone being exploited in any way, you should not hesitate to report it to the relevant authorities.

These slaves can be around you on a regular basis and you wouldn’t even know. Be sure to keep an eye out for whether someone appears scared, shows any signs of abuse, is unable to move freely, or seems scared to talk openly. If you notice someone like that around you, alert the authorities right away instead of approaching them directly as that could endanger them further. If you try to do your part in being alert to another’s exploitation, you may end up saving someone’s life.