Mapping Modern Slavery Risk
Modern slavery impacts every country and virtually every industry in the world today. Over 40 million victims span our global supply chains, from cotton harvesting to fishing, garment manufacturing to electronics. When looking for where to source materials, where to invest money, and where to conduct business, incorporating modern slavery risk into the decision making process can feel like an overwhelming task.
However, there are data sources out there that help us to understand where the risk lies. These resources break down the complex and widespread crime of modern slavery by country, or industry, and provide us more clarity on how and where modern slavery exists within the world today.
When accessing this data, it is important to take into account the limitations of such information. Modern slavery, by its very nature, is a clandestine crime that can be challenging to quantify. However, these sources do provide an initial insight, and are updated on a regular basis with new research and intelligence, to further our understanding and allow for more effective risk management.
The Global Slavery Index
The Global Slavery Index provides a comprehensive overview of the modern slavery situation in almost every country in the world. A country-by-country breakdown allows you to dive into the data and understand the following key information about that location:
- The number of people estimated to be living in modern slavery.
- The prevalence of modern slavery related to the population.
- How the prevalence of modern slavery compares to other countries, globally and within that particular region.
- A vulnerability score, determining how the local context may be creating modern slavery vulnerabilities.
- Information on how the government is responding to the issue in that country.
- Explanations of typical industries impacted by modern slavery, and patterns of exploitation.
US DOL List of Goods & Services
This data source, from the US Department of Labour (DOL), lists goods and services that are known to carry a high risk of forced and/or child labour. This is updated on a regular basis to reflect changing trends and analysis in this space.
By searching the list of goods and services, you can see the modern slavery risks associated with them, as well as information on locations where risk is considered to be higher.
This data can be found online , but is unavailable for access online in some countries. If that is the case for you, then the ‘Sweat & Toil’ smartphone app allows you to access the data by searching by good or service on your mobile phone. This free app is available on Android and Apple devices, and provides an easy interface to access and search all of the insights from the DOL.
The State Department’s Annual Trafficking In Persons Report
This annual report analyses the modern slavery situation in almost every country in the world. It provides analysis on:
- How each country is managing modern slavery prevention, detection, and mitigation, through allocating a ‘Tier’ to each location.
- Analysis of common trends and typologies of modern slavery in that location.
- Recommendations for improvements in anti-slavery responses, as well as examples of best practice.
- Analysis on how the modern slavery response has changed over time.
- Additional ‘special reports’ on issues such as the impact of Covid-19 on modern slavery risk across the world.
Author – Phoebe Ewen
What are modern slavery risks?Modern slavery risks include forced labor, debt bondage, human trafficking, child labor, and other forms of exploitation. These risks can arise in a variety of industries, including agriculture, manufacturing, construction, and hospitality, among others. Modern slavery risks can affect vulnerable populations, including women, children, and migrant workers, and may be exacerbated by factors such as poverty, discrimination, and conflict. It is important for businesses to identify and address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains to promote ethical and sustainable practices and to protect human rights.
What are the modern slavery trends now?Modern slavery is increasing. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), 10 million more people have fallen victim to modern slavery in the last five years, on top of the 40 million from the previous report. Of these people, 28 million were in forced labour, and 22 million were in forced marriage. This alarming increase in the number of global victims will only continue to rise if societies fail to work together on this issue.
Is there any other free helpful modern slavery toolkit?Yes, The Mekong Club offers a range of free and members-only tools to help businesses and organizations combat modern slavery. These tools include risk assessment templates, due diligence checklists, and training materials, among others. The Mekong Club's tools are designed to be practical and user-friendly, helping businesses to identify and address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains. By utilizing these resources, businesses can take concrete steps to combat modern slavery and promote ethical and sustainable practices.
Where can I access resources on the Modern Slavery Act?You can access resources on the Modern Slavery Act from a variety of sources, including government agencies, non-profit organizations, and industry associations. The Mekong Club also offers a range of resources to help businesses and organizations comply with the Act, including guidance documents, training materials, and risk assessment templates. These resources are designed to be practical and user-friendly, helping businesses to understand and meet their obligations under the Act. By accessing these resources, businesses can take important steps to identify and address modern slavery risks in their operations and supply chains.
Does the Mekong Club provide modern-day slavery training?Yes, The Mekong Club provides modern-day slavery training for businesses and organizations. The training covers a range of topics, including how to identify and address modern slavery risks in operations and supply chains, the legal and ethical frameworks for combating modern slavery, and best practices for due diligence and risk assessment. The training is designed to be practical to help businesses to take concrete steps to address modern slavery and promote ethical and sustainable practices. The Mekong Club also offers tailored training programs to meet the specific needs of individual businesses and industries.