How many people are enslaved globally?

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Around 27 million people are enslaved globally, with the most prevalent areas being Southeast Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Forced labor includes hereditary bondage, government hard labor, and sex trafficking. The first anti-slavery movement began in 1787, and in 2012, slave labor accounted for a small percentage of the global economy. Approximately 26% of all enslaved people are under 18.

An estimated 27 million people are enslaved worldwide. That’s about 0.3% of the world’s population, or the equivalent of the population of Texas. There is no definitive method of tracking the number of people engaged in forced labor, so the exact number is not known. “Slave” tends to be an umbrella term referring to a person who is forced into work to which she has not consented and from which she is unable to escape. This occurs globally, but is thought to be most prevalent in Southeast Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Most forced labor tends to be for individuals or private businesses, such as hereditary bondage for collateral debt. This is when a person is used as a means to pay off a debt. Other types of slavery include prison camps for government hard labor and sex trafficking, where people are forced into prostitution.

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The first anti-slavery movement in the modern era was started in 1787 by the Anti-Slavery International in London to promote the abolition of slavery in the British Empire.
In 2012, slave labor and its production accounted for $30 billion US dollars (USD) to $45 billion of the global economy, the smallest percentage of the global economy ever.
An estimated 26% of all enslaved people in the world are under the age of 18.

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