Modern-day slavery: A problem that can't be ignored
Photographer Lisa Kristine found these boys in Ghana after they had already been working for 12 hours. As she writes in her book, "Slavery," it was "impossible to know whether it's the cool breeze or fear of empty nets that is making them shake."
March 4th, 2011
11:17 AM ET

Modern-day slavery: A problem that can't be ignored

By Tony Maddox
Executive Vice President and Managing Director of CNN International

You know that moment when you read something, and then immediately have to re-read it because you cannot believe it is true? That happened to me when I read that the levels of slavery and people trafficking today are greater than at any point in history.

Surely that cannot be right?

Obviously there is no precise figure, but the International Labor Organization and respected abolitionists like Kevin Bales and Siddharth Kara put the global number of slaves at between 10-30 million worldwide. At a minimum, 10 million.

Driving the global people trading business is ruthless greed, vast returns on investment and crucially, government ineffectiveness. The same as most criminal enterprises.

And the numbers involved are extraordinary.

The United Nations estimates the total market value of human trafficking at 32 billion U.S. dollars. In Europe, criminals are pocketing around $2.5 billion per year through sexual exploitation and forced labor.

But let’s remember the commodity here is not drugs or contraband; it is human beings. And usually the most vulnerable in society.

Those unable to defend themselves, those who innocently trust the intentions of others, those who can easily be made to disappear.

The cruelty and inhumanity of those who would profit from such a crime is truly shocking.

In previous centuries, when slaves were captured and traded each had a significant market value. Although their ill-treatment was often horrific, the reality was that it made economic sense to keep a slave alive and functioning, to protect what was usually a significant investment, made with a view to long term.

That is not so today. Many girls and women, who are trafficked, particularly for the sex trade, are done so with a view to high rate of return over a relatively short period of time. Then they are switched from the steady supply of replacements.

And what do you suppose happens to those who are seen to have maxed out their usefulness?

Often addicted to drugs they have been forced to take, almost certainly in the country illegally, with no support, and with no record that they ever existed.

A bad outcome is more or less assured.

It is also difficult to see any hope for the people who trade in people. They have reconciled themselves to the awful crimes that they commit, and are unlikely to stop because others tell them to.

No, to stop this shameful trade takes the will of governments.

First in the countries where people are either abducted or forced into labor.

These are often nations that are facing many problems, with tough economies, poor infrastructure, and sporadic and ineffective forces of law and order. People in rural and remote regions are often the targets, people who can be easily misled, or just kidnapped, with next to no chance of the crime ever being properly investigated.

For local and national governments it is just one more of a series of pressing problems they must face. The international community has a role to play in forcing it higher up each of these countries to-do lists.

This is not a problem that can be ignored.

CNN will go to the places where the people traffickers ensnare their victims.

And we will follow the routes through to markets where they get the best return on their haul.

And these destination countries are often not those struggling with the basics of civil government and policing.

No, they are established western societies, throughout Europe and in the U.S.

Have you noticed when there are raids on the brothels in these countries, that when the police do a sweep of the red light areas, so many of those arrested appear to come from thousands of miles away? How did they get there?

Is the so-called massage parlor operating in your neighborhood, sometimes brazenly touting the services of teenage Asian girls, really journey’s end for a wretched trip that began continents away?

This is a story which truly touches many parts of the world.

The current rates of return ensure that the people trafficking business will continue to grow, unless there is a concerted effort and will to stop it, by governments around the world.

The UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime reports that human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world – now tied with arms smuggling and trailing only the illicit drug trade. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says human trafficking crosses cultures and continents.

CNN will use the full range of our international resources to track and champion this story. We will be in the countries where people are abducted, traded and passed into the hands of the smugglers. We will follow the routes as people are ruthlessly moved to areas where they can generate the highest return on investment.
And we will be at the end of the line where men, women and boys and girls are over-worked, raped and abused, and when no longer of value, discarded.

It is a story which is shocking and tough.

But there are also many examples of great courage and inspiration. Of people who have made a stand, of groups who at great personal risk have taken the fight to the criminals. And of individuals who have found freedom, and have not let their experience break them.

We want to highlight these important victories, these triumphs of human spirit.

There are many fine groups and individuals doing outstanding work to help trafficking victims.

Organizations like Anti-Slavery International, Free the Slaves, International Justice Mission, ECPAT, Not For Sale and Polaris Project have fearless team members at the frontlines, risking their lives in lawless lands, to help those most vulnerable.

Celebrities like Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, Ricky Martin, Anil Kapoor, Emmanuel Jal and Peter Gabriel are also dedicating their voices to the growing call for justice around the world.

CNN will be proud to work with many of them as we put our resources behind this project throughout 2011.

Because human trafficking is a shameful trade that must be stopped.

« Previous entry
soundoff (321 Responses)
  1. Julie Geldreich

    I am astounded that human trafficing has reached such global proportions. It is heartbreaking to watch. Thank you and your wonderful employee's for undertaking this enormous task to save those who cannot save themselves. I hope your reach goes beyond 2011. Please advise the ordinary people like myself what we can do to help. Thank you.

    March 5, 2011 at 10:54 pm | Reply
    • Reality Check

      I wonder how many of those slave laborers make Apple's iPads, iPhones and iPods?

      March 7, 2011 at 8:19 am | Reply
      • AppleQueen

        None. Do some research.

        March 7, 2011 at 11:59 am |
      • Virgil

        Until folks understand what they are talking about, do-gooders should back off this slave thing, it isn't as it appears here. I am a former slave, I say "indentured servant," when I was 7, my brothers 6 & 9, & three sisters, we were destitute when our father died at age 33. Mom was 25 and a marriage was arranged by her mother to this farmer who owned a 40 acre farm and was 50-years-old. We were begging for places to live, some had dirt floors and were basically plywood shacks. The farmer gave us food and a nice house, we were beaten almost every day, but, we didn't have to beg. Two of the sisters died, (natural causes) the remaining 4 own our own homes, have good jobs and are happily married. What do-gooders are doing is taking this security of a job, any way to survive without begging, away from a lot of people here. Get a life do-gooders until you really understand the situation...

        March 7, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        Absolutely no victim of human trafficking get's the opportunity to work for Apple Computers or any other firm for that matter.That makes human trafficking most reprehensible doesn't it?

        March 28, 2011 at 12:45 pm |
      • tj


        "we were beaten almost every day"

        I think there's some pathology at work here. I really don't think you should speak for others if you think you had a decent situation.

        April 6, 2011 at 7:36 pm |
      • Charlotte Crist

        Always a bad Apple guy in the bunch.

        March 18, 2012 at 5:07 am |
      • douglas

        Absolutely agree with Virgil. All this sensationalism and trumped up reporting, CNN patting themselves on the back every 5 minutes of airtime. Its Ludicrous. Get real. People have work. Not all people have jobs at CNN. Those who do work in many of those supposed "slave trades" are highly thankful of having an income whatever that may be. If CNN really want to make a difference they would be funneling $ into schools, education, job creation etc etc . but do they do any of that? OH no! its all media hype. Taking a child away from a cocoa plantation that provided him/her a means and leaving them without is absurd. Penalise the chocolate companies! Its really not rocket science.

        August 5, 2012 at 10:01 am |
      • cindysuzann

        I took a class dedicated to this issue. CNN's job, as a whole, for the most part is to report. To make you aware. Your job (take your pick): Be aware. Make others aware. Donate time (preferably) and money. Fight for the cause. ...You should at least look up an article or two that validates your comments before you make them. How do you think the problem could be solved except by giving slaves alternate opportunities? Apple guy: You are 1 victim of slavery. Note the word "victim". You are biased when it comes to this topic especially, but with most other things too, and more than your "average" male counterpart. Sorry, it's the truth and that sucks. In addition, who are you to speak for all slaves? Do you speak for the women, teens and children being beaten, drugged and raped around the clock who are irreparably psychologically damaged? "Living" in Jamaica, Pakistan, Mauritania, Brazil, India, Calcutta, to name a few. Do you speak for our American women (hey, males too! Gays abroad do exist!) who are abducted? I think not. So go read something, listen to people who know what their talking about, and shutup.

        August 11, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
      • Michele York

        I have a son who was inducted 3 and a half years ago into what was termed a contracted internship, his duty was to code an entire operating system by himself and website to link small business with big business. It ended up with me getting his letters to give to the Kearny NJ USA police chief to rescue him from the Job Master if he should no longer be allowed to call nor visit me. I observed foul play in local town where my son I saw frantic to get my attention and escape from the front apt. bldg. (of Elm Park) this past April. (More gruesome details) Job Master explained I was NOT to talk to my son..nor a Mr. L.BLack also in ft.Bldg. The Boss made note in cell conversation that "Shey was to get the bugs out of the OS." This past JULY 2nd.. my son calls to leave VM that he loves me and that we will be finally reunited me in Sept. of 2014. NEVER happened. Slave Master now asks for time until he allows Shey to visit me for Christmas while he visits his dying father in New Zealand?! SM also claims finally earning money with first deal..said that 2 years ago. He is very angry with me and says he no longer trusts me and that I cannot call him anymore..complains that he FEARS that I will lock Shey in a room because he heard me do it?! NOT TRUE...Police have ignored all pleas for past 3 years and have even terrorized me to withdraw true report of foul play or else!

        October 22, 2014 at 7:08 pm |
      • cowboy

        We need to understand something here but few do. Man has two nature's, one is a spiritual nature and one is an animal nature. Those who live decent lives and do good things try and live in the light and teachings of a higher power. Don't misunderstand , going to church and doing bad things or treating other human beings because of their beliefs or color does not cut it. You may think you have a free pass but "all" actions have consequences. Then there are the ones who live by their animal nature (survival) who believe anything is ok if it helps them survive and thrive. They follow darkness, have no concern for any living thing and justify whatever terrible or unspeakable acts they commit with lies , misinformation or just not caring one way or the other. Some educated ones even use the lie of "for the greater good" or "national security" or even some more ridiculous ones. It is a struggle or all described as temptations but on any given day or any given hour or moment we have the capacity to choose one way or the other. All things in our world are ruled by polarity positive or negative. It can be defined also as darkness or light, good or evil etc etc etc................Choose wisely for all actions have consequences and their are no "free passes" for beliefs if actions speak darkness continually.

        October 3, 2016 at 11:57 am |
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        October 2, 2019 at 8:17 am |
    • Reality

      It is impossible to eradicate sexual slavery. If a catholic priest in Boston can sexually abuse young boys, boys living in america with protective and well to do parents. Imagine some child in a remote village in a poor underdeveloped country .The United States government can't eradicate it in their own soil. Therefore no amount of government intervention can eradicate this problem. As far as economic slavery is concerned it is a whole another Discussion ( maybe some governments can help)

      March 7, 2011 at 12:31 pm | Reply
      • alex

        and why do you think the catholic church went everywhere setting up orphanages? and never bothered to speak against slavery then or now? answer, so they'd have a convenient spot for and endless supply of victims. And of course, all in the name of God. Sicken yet there it is.

        March 7, 2011 at 1:28 pm |
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        If it was possible to eradicate slavery the way the world first knew it,then it's also possible to eradicate sexual slavery.It all begins with a resolute "No" from any section of society.At that time there was a group simply known as the Abolitionists and they were so resolute and effective that they at least got Abe Lincoln to act. I don't know of any other form of modern day slavery, but if you're alluding to poor wages in some parts of the world the word "slavery" is a misnomer.Isn't it?

        April 7, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
      • jupiter

        If everybody says "it's impossible" like you, nothing will be changed in this world. And you wouldn't have what you have today. We take everything for granted, but forget that everything once started with one person, one goal. but REALITY is – we can make a change !

        October 22, 2011 at 10:00 pm |
      • dont worry


        December 2, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
    • Mohd

      Its not surprising even the so called middle east places like DUBAI and OMAN and SAUDI today takes passports of skilled workers and then uses same to blackmail them to work for peanuts or even no peanuts and tortures them in alien land

      March 11, 2011 at 4:20 am | Reply
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        By simply recognizing some categories of people as skilled workers,they cannot be slaves anywhere including the countries you mentioned.The issue of commensurate remuneration is another matter generally and on which scholars of Henry Fayol's era have written extensively.It's also a subject of contemporary legislation worldwide.

        April 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm |
    • newuniverse

      Indonesian girls allege harassment at Goa spa – Times Of India
      4 Dec 2010 ... PANAJI: Eight Indonesian girls working in a leading spa in Goa have escaped from the 'clutches' of its promoters and have fled to Mumbai, ... › Collections – Cached
      Indonesian girls allege harassment at Goa spa – Page 2 – Times Of ...
      4 Dec 2010 ... PANAJI: Eight Indonesian girls working in a leading spa in ... › Collections – Cached
      Show more results from
      Indonesian girls rescued from Goa spa | Goa, World Snap News
      5 Dec 2010 ... Panaji : Goa Crime Branch has written to the Indonesian Embassy seeking permission to record statements of the 11 Indonesian girls who were ... › States › Goa – Cached
      [Goanet-News] NEWS: Indonesian girls allege harassment at Goa spa ...
      5 Dec 2010 ... Indonesian girls allege harassment at Goa spa Preetu Venugopalan Nair, TNN, Dec 4, 2010, 05.21am IST PANAJI: Eight Indonesian girls working ... – Cached
      Indonesian girls rescued from Goa spa

      March 28, 2011 at 10:56 am | Reply
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        The girls you're referring to had the listening ears of Indonesian authorities and in fact were rescued and are no longer in danger.The worst scenario are cases of those that made this project inevitable.

        April 7, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
    • Ezequias Farias

      What a shame mankind! What have you done to people of your own kind? That is a bit understandable back in old days of pharaos, kings as they had different aspects and points of views, but now? 21 century and we still face this situation? The worst thing is that this will not stop easily, maybe some companies will close due to this fact but for the majority this problem will continue to grow more and more. I just remember a little piece on the bible that says "In the end of times the love of many will get colder" And that is happening right here right now.

      October 21, 2011 at 4:28 pm | Reply
  2. Patrick Dunn

    This story is very alarming, but not surprising. Living in China now for almost 10 years I have seen first-hand the child beggars, the child street performers. I have raised my voice to friends, including police, no one wanted to get involved. I felt helpless and frustrated. I have been told by a female student (adult at the time) in Ottawa, a Canadian, who was duped into getting a job,along with her friend while a teenager, in Europe. Was then forced into prostitution, kept under 24 hour watch, moved from place to place througout Germany for four years, before they escaped. They had no idea where they were (Frankfurt as it turned out) but found the police,and returned to Canada.
    CNN, with its world-wide resources, can be this catalyst for long overdue change. This is a grass-roots problem and we all need to get involved, wherever we are on this planet, and shine our light on this darkness. Please tell me how I can help, what can I do in a country when those around you look the other way. And please don't let this be a ratings, flash-in-the-pan operation. There are, I am sure, many out here who feel as I do and are ready to do our part. Enough is enough. Thank you CNN for this. I'm Ready!!!

    March 6, 2011 at 8:22 pm | Reply
    • Bonnie Girard

      Patrick, I share your frustration at the problem of child-trafficking which you have identified in China (where I have been for 18 of the last 24 years, since 1987). We, too, have taken this issue to the highest of authorities, and to official women's groups in China. What we experienced was not so much unwillingness to do something, or a deaf ear, but an inability to find and enforce effective, long-term solutions. In one case, we managed to co-opt the assistance and intervention of Beijing authorities who actually arrested a trafficker and returned the flower girls she was running to their provincial home. The kids were back within two weeks. Some of the problem in China, sadly, can be laid at the foot of parents themselves, who allow and even encourage their children (usually girls) to be taken by an "auntie" or "uncle" to the city to earn extra money. These girls, often as young as 8, are then primed for and turned to prostitution once they reach puberty. You have seen for yourself how rampant this problem is in China. In my opinion, child trafficking in China is a societal issue as much as it is a governmental one; the will, drive, and greed of those who are economically benefiting from the trade are able to thwart the power and resources of those in the Chinese government who would like to see it eradicated.

      March 7, 2011 at 8:39 am | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Hi Pat,
      I think you've made a significant move through sharing your information/experience.That ultimately may be all you need to do and I'm sure it would make a significant impact on the effort.

      April 7, 2011 at 6:16 pm | Reply
  3. Sam Ayodele

    Thanks for joining the fight against modern-day-slavery.
    I will call for education of young girls, push for international protection for children – regardless of nationalty, race or colour, and create centers that can care for children worldwide, especially when the parents cannot fend for them.
    I will want to see international communities forcing each country to educate and take care of their children. the more we make parents and nations responsible for these children, the better our community will be. we may not be able to stop this eronious act, but will surely reduce it
    Whatever sweetens the taste of a poison, does not most times reduce its potency, the perpetrators of this act have grown beyond their conscience, they deserve full measure of law against them.

    March 6, 2011 at 9:59 pm | Reply
    • Anonymous

      You make me proud to have the last name Ayodele!

      March 7, 2011 at 2:50 am | Reply
    • mamaw

      If you can do all that, more power to you.

      March 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
    • JenAlves

      I applaud everyone out there who has taken on this daunting task to attempt to end this barbaric practice. I teach self esteem building principles in the prison to women in hopes of stopping this vicious cycle and plan to expand the curriculum broad-based. Let me know how I may help.

      June 26, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Reply
    • Elyza

      The genius store claled, they\'re running out of you.

      December 27, 2011 at 2:50 am | Reply
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      December 29, 2011 at 4:52 am | Reply
  4. Peter otieno

    Thanks cnn for exposin the untold story of modern slavery whch is rapidly spreadng.. I'm in kenya where this act has tken centr stge. Chldrn are being trafficd 2 western countries afta joining opharnage homes..some r sold 2 tourist for commercial sex! Go go! Cnn n stop this act of impunity!

    March 7, 2011 at 1:05 am | Reply
  5. Sarah Achieng

    After reading of how humanbeings are used and descarded after their usefulnes is over its so painful and Iimagined what if it was me?we must do something

    March 7, 2011 at 2:51 am | Reply
  6. Jam

    This is not a new problem people. we need to set up safe places in the US for American girls instead of putting them in jail with their pimps. For other countries we need to help police forces conduct raids and enforce anti trafficing laws before they can be transported here to the US. I say the US because the united states is a main consumer of this criminal act. I dont see and end to this but anything we can do to reduce the amount of foriegn and domestic sex slaves is a step that is right for these people. We should shun the glorification of the sex trade in the media as well.

    March 7, 2011 at 4:59 am | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Unfortunately, I cannot independently confirm your assertion that the United States is a "major beneficiary" of human trafficking or sexual slavery.That obviously runs afoul of applicable laws in the United States.For instance I do know that minors are prohibited from employment of any sort.I agree with you that strip bars and others like it are not necessary and neither should they be permitted to thrive.Pornography especially is incongruous with the image of your average female manager or female college professor or female rookie.It may have even lost its appeal considering the fact that you as a regular male have an unfettered access to your girl or woman as the case may be.

      April 7, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Reply
    • Kevin

      Seriously...I am reading comments on here with people JUSTIFYING SLAVERY, making excuses and conspiracies. WTF. This is a problem world wide that most like will not be eradicated, BUT can be helped reduced by an educated population to the subject. Slavery of any form is unacceptable.

      March 19, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Reply
      • Marp

        @Kevin, nobody here is justifying slavery, but some are explalining how certain people and families end up in a slave-wage situation. In my family, long ago, they would have starved to death had the children not gone to work in cotton mills for pennies and that's after their first year apprenticeship (eg, no pay while they were "training" a full year). My grandmother stood on a box at age 8 to run a machine that would terrify me. But they did what they had to do. Slavery takes on many forms from subtle to dramatic - your comments are completely void of any personal experience. Take a pin and burst that bubble you live in. The world isn't nearly as fancy as you and your personal take on things you have no understanding of.

        January 3, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
  7. Dr. Sheikh

    There are even more worst example of modern day slavery, if you want to know that you need to know about Arabs, they hire people for work and do not pay them properly and the threat them if they tried to switch to another company they will get banned in their country, natives in these countries charge workers money to provide them visa for a limited time,

    A Multi-millionaire will charge $2000 to $ $5000 from a labor who is earning $150 a month. this is how they are providing income to their non working people who don't even have common sense.

    The most shocking thing is that they have legalized this thing in all over the Arab. as soon as some person is coming to work in their country they will keep their passport so they cannot leave their country, you can search 'labor camp' in google images to know rest of the story.

    March 7, 2011 at 5:20 am | Reply
    • shang

      Yes i agree with you. I had a friend who once work there and everything you said is true.

      March 7, 2011 at 10:45 am | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Hi Sheikh,
      Images from North Africa and other Arab nations in the Middle East show that everyone except perhaps the ruling class or those in the corridors of power are victims of your observations hence the infectious revolution in Tunisia and Egypt first which encouraged those in Yemen,Jordan,Bahrain,Morocco,Algeria and lately Libya.

      April 7, 2011 at 6:46 pm | Reply
  8. Ann C

    We would welcome an alliance with CNN as we work within Israeli society and government for the defense of trafficked victims and to create new freedom initiatives that prevent future abuse within Israel. You can join us by getting informed, writing in and partnering with us, at

    March 7, 2011 at 5:29 am | Reply
  9. YoYo

    While it wouldn't fix 100% of the problem, legalizing (and regulating) prostitution would go a long way to minimizing this problem. While I do not encourage prostitution, I acknowledge it is a very real drive for people. Having it legalized and regulated allows more safe guards to be placed on ensuring that prostitutes are not harmed, sick, or doing so against their will. Keeping it in the underground, makes pimps profitable, proliferates disease, and encourages slavery. I encourage everyone to at least think about this logically before dismissing it.

    March 7, 2011 at 7:43 am | Reply
    • coffegirl

      I agree, logically it makes the most sense. We cannot stop people from wanting and paying for sex, it is called the oldest profession for a reason. It may not take away all forms of slavery but it will have an impact. And just think how many stories about our politicians won't matter anymore...Oh my, someone paid for sex. Like it's the first time. Hahah.

      March 7, 2011 at 9:40 am | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Even in developing countries worldwide,prostitution appears to be on the decline and certainly it has lost it's appeal in better countries.High school drop-outs in Africa now learn vocations like fashion designing and hairdressing while some hawk food and water. More skilled women are streaming into the labor force and are holding good jobs and her given top responsibilities.To these categories of women,prostitution is not an option.Is it?

      April 7, 2011 at 7:02 pm | Reply
  10. Diana Lynn Ellinghouse

    I am grateful to see news coverage of this. The use of adult or child as gratification tool can only be destructive. Fifty-five years after the experience, I am forced to relive violent prostitution in flashbacks of early childhood. My mind was shattered along with my bones, and after all this time I am still working at recovery. Seeing video of men my age sobbing with similar memories helped me to speak out. CNN's work will give voice to others. My hope is to empower victims with knowledge and to create an environment of compassion for all.

    March 7, 2011 at 8:32 am | Reply
  11. Jim Osborne

    Given the scope of modern day slavery (and the economic forces which drive it) I am inclined to believe America would have to give up foreign trade entirely to avoid buying products made by slaves.

    March 7, 2011 at 8:50 am | Reply
    • Renee

      If each person were to start small, maybe buying fair trade coffee or researching to learn how companies are ranked in slave labor and then either boycotting that store or start a letter writing campaign to the company to show the importance of it.

      March 7, 2011 at 11:13 am | Reply
      • Beth S

        I agree, Renee. While we cannot all be on the front lines, rescuing slaves, building shelters, counseling victims, we can all vote with our $$. Become a more conscious consumer, buy fairly traded goods when ever possible, let corporations know why you are or are not buying their products. Educate friends, neighbors, club members, congregations about modern day slavery. Become aware and know some of the things to watch for. (Common citizens have spotted slaves being trafficked, beaten, or just sensed "something was wrong" about the waitress at a favorite restaurant, contacted 911 and rescues have resulted from such actions) Donate to Free the Slaves, Not for Sale and other orgs doing abolitionist work. Support legislative action, write your representatives when anti-trafficking bills are proposed. Inform yourself by visiting abolitionist websites, then tell others. We can all do something.
        @ CNN – Thank you for helping to inform people that slavery and human trafficking did not end in the 19th century. We all need to be aware of this incredible abomination that is alive and well in our world today. And we can all help to end it.

        March 7, 2011 at 11:43 am |
    • Jim Osborne

      I like Renee's idea about building a corporate list and then having a national boycott of companies who persist in selling items produced by slave labor. This is the only possible way a grass-roots effort could rid the world of slavery. Imagine if every American would not enter a McDonalds for only one day... I would think McDonalds would get the message very fast.

      March 7, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Reply
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        Are you serious Jim?Would you really be a part of that ? Do you realize the repercussions of that, if it's possible, on the entire US economy and other countries where McDonald's has branches and complementary affiliates of McDonald's?
        To be precise Jim,you're trying to send more people to unemployment and that's simply a recipe for chaos.Would you rather that happens?Think again.Without doubt, not many would buy that from you.Honestly.

        April 7, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
  12. Mikatex Onyeze

    Slavery is one of the political strategy by the west against Africans and it has been effective more than six hundred years ago, to enable them completely displace children of Africa ,so that it will be easier for them to be robbing the natural gift that belong to us. The end to slavery is justice, uncorrupted government in africa, compensations and our sold brothers and sisters around the world will start coming home to there mother land. Contrary to this, natural justice will come to place and those involve will pay heavily. No body can cheat nature and run away

    March 7, 2011 at 9:08 am | Reply
    • Guest

      If you'll recall history, Africans sold fellow Africans into slavery. There have always been slaves in Africa, in the world. Blaming the west for African slavery is contrary to history. Yes, the west, during their colonial periods and the beginning of their new countries imported slaves from Africa, slaves that were enslaved and sold to them by Africans. Yes, there is still slavery in Africa. Yes, some of it is undoubtedly due to western individuals or corrupt companies/organizations. But the truth remains that there is still African on African slavery in Africa (and elsewhere too, I'm sure). No race, continent, country, is innocent when it comes to slavery. All have partaken in it.

      March 7, 2011 at 11:37 am | Reply
      • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

        It's nice to have you guest and you've made an outstanding observation,but it would have been 100% correct,if you didn't blame the West for Africa's woes.A little more digging or reflection,if you will ,would disabuse your mind of this clutter. You may start by reflecting on Africa since 1947 when the so-called independence movements "began taking effect".Through-out Africa there have been coups and counter coups and rogue governments whose atrocities are diametrically opposed to the development of Africa and its manpower to service foreign investments and the administration of state in Africa.This concept or contraption you call slavery loses its relevance in this context,because those "who were so sold and bought" must have been super-humans especially as they have made farming communities and the labor force in Europe and the Americas redundant or nonexistent .Does that make sense ?

        April 7, 2011 at 7:37 pm |
  13. clarity007

    Bush was right. O my god!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    March 7, 2011 at 10:06 am | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      You can say that again Sir and Thank you.

      April 7, 2011 at 7:38 pm | Reply
  14. John

    I don't know why commenters singled out China, which, ironically seems to do a better job than even some western countries in eradicating human trafficking and slavery. Sure there are beggars in China... but what about India, what about the United States... It's incredible how some people turn a blind eye to their own countries' woes.

    March 7, 2011 at 10:15 am | Reply
    • PRISM1234

      Glad you said that, it is the truth!

      March 7, 2011 at 11:58 am | Reply
  15. Elsie

    When I was 7 I was forced to work. I had to clean floors from 3 am to 6 pm, the days I refused to do it, I had no food. Now I live in America, I have 2 little girls, still dont understand HOW in this century there are too many children enduring all kind of pain and sorrow. I cry everytime I read this kind of news, those years left a deep mark in my heart.

    March 7, 2011 at 10:20 am | Reply
    • Kira

      Elsie, I would love to hear/write your story. Please email me KIRA722 at GMAIL dot COM

      March 7, 2011 at 11:47 am | Reply
    • feyisewa

      wel we all pass this kind of slave trade one way or the other,ok let me tell u little abt my lif,wen i was 10yrs i was send to liv wit my half sister,early in the morning i wil do all the house work wit no food waitin for me and she a nurse she will go to work early.wen she back she wil buy wat she wil eat,so i start stealin smtin to eat wen she cook stew she wont give mi at out of it.there was a day i was hungry wit no food so i ate d meat in d pot wen came back frm work n discovered i stole one meat in the pot she use fire to burned my face.sm1 in my area knws my mother she traveled to my villiage to tell her that dis is wat i was goin tru bt mom said is not tru that she cant do dt to mi,wen she went out sm pple contribute money for mi and take me to park so dt was hw i escope to my villiage.wen my mom sees me she cried and blame hersf .@ 12yrs i startd hawky water in a bucket to see mysf tru secondary school cos i cant sell my body it is a choices u made intead of sleeping wit men i said no.each time i remember wat i pass tru i cry at that age i av to pass tru tins like that.plss fight against human traffickin.

      March 8, 2011 at 5:58 am | Reply
    • lil

      mam, why may i by gold coach?

      May 4, 2011 at 4:43 pm | Reply
    • Aileen

      Ditto –

      June 7, 2011 at 5:46 am | Reply
    • Aileen

      Would also like to hear more about your story –

      June 7, 2011 at 5:47 am | Reply
  16. Mark Young

    Start in Miami, Florida, Phoenix, Arizona and Cancun

    March 7, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply
  17. jj

    It is so easy to mock CNN news. The stories are mostly light (or is it the stories we READ are the light ones?), the editing and spelling not perfect. This may be the most important story you've run. I'm not sure what can be done about it. We have a huge problem here in the US, and can do little. There's little will, and the problem is too enveloped to stop. Plus, there's that greed thing.
    So for all the times I may snicker while reading an article, rest assured – I will be glued to this one! THANK YOU

    March 7, 2011 at 10:33 am | Reply
  18. noakz

    How can I as a Freelance Photojournalist partner with CNN on this? I am willing to go anywhere in the world to work on this. Please contact me.

    March 7, 2011 at 10:49 am | Reply
    • Maria

      Yes, please! I'll go and I'll pay my own way just to be a part of shedding light on this issue and hopefully helping to stunt its growth, if not eradicate it completely (wishful thinking).

      March 7, 2011 at 11:39 am | Reply
  19. Albert Apemewoe

    We all have the responsibilities to take care of these little ones. I was actually working sometimes ago in Ghana in these types of projects helping children for the integration into society in the central region of ghana in the twifo Hemang Lower Denkyira District especially in a small village called Wawase. But i resigned last year because though it is a humanitarian and divine duty to take care of these defensless and innocent ones, we also needed to be rewards correspondingly. My italian sponsored NGO did not want just to pay me a reasonable wage. They pushed me to resign. But the fact remains that we need do tell parents that it is a sin to bring these children into life and neglect to take care of them. But then in case of situation beyond control where parents in one way or the other fail to live up to their prime duty, society can take it up. People are just living selfish life and the slogan is " my family and i" forgetting that you and your family do not make a world. Let all of us do something for them before it is too late... i am ready to collarobarate with anyone to do something in this regards again... write to or Albert the former Secretary of Association of Children's Homes and orphanages in Ghana-ACHO GHANA.

    March 7, 2011 at 10:49 am | Reply
    • Hessy

      Deep thought! Thanks for cotrniutbing.

      December 27, 2011 at 3:12 am | Reply
  20. Shamrock6

    A problem that can't be ignored.....yeah right. There's no such thing. Just watch me. My apathy knows no bounds.

    March 7, 2011 at 10:57 am | Reply
  21. Åke Hagström

    Incredibly how calling a spade a spade can make a difference in sending the message. Good job CNN

    March 7, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
  22. Renee

    Thank you for shedding light on this horrific issue and bringing it into the living rooms of people so they are forced to see it for the brutality that modern day slavery is.

    March 7, 2011 at 11:10 am | Reply
  23. Chetan Desai

    If article and news like this does not boils your blood then nothing will.

    March 7, 2011 at 11:17 am | Reply
  24. emma

    look up ABOLITION MEDIA. A group of artists raising money for safebeds in the United States. Last month, they doubled the number of safehouses in the country (there are only a handful) for the few women and children that have been rescued from such horrible lives - if you could them lives. It is a small organization with big potential.

    March 7, 2011 at 11:47 am | Reply
  25. zach

    I whole heartedly support your efforts to expose all non-human behaviour.
    Including the total passivity from the world leaders towards the slaugther of the Libyan
    people. Obviously our leaders care more for power and profits than they care for human lives.
    TRAGIC! As I see it no world leader deserves their positions and should be removed
    at once. We, the People, can do that!

    March 7, 2011 at 11:50 am | Reply
  26. PRISM1234

    I am very much touched with the way this story was written... one of the few with heart and soul put in it...Thank you Tony Maddox!

    You know, people, this story really proves something: that our age of human advancement in science, technologies and knowledge of every kind did NOT improve our human condition right there where it most matters: in the heart and soul of man(kind), which is the human character. That alone in itself proves something what so many people don't want to face nor admit to themselves, and that is that human beings without following the blueprint given to them written upon their consciences by their creator, will ultimately debase themselves to the levels even lower then the be@sts to whom was not given any conscience...Therefore I don't think it is time to celebrate our progress, but rather to mourn for those who became victims caught in the web spun by it......I
    May God bless CNN's efforts, and efforts of every other Org. that's seeking to help those victims!

    March 7, 2011 at 11:51 am | Reply
  27. Bonaventure Stephen Gomes

    India has a significant population of child labor. Visit the numerous restaurants in Mumbai, and the street side cafes, you will witness the number of young boys cleaning up the tables and the dishes. They work long hours, often times, from the crack of dawn, and into the early hours of the morning. They sleep bare naked on the floors of these restaurants with the hoteliers switching off the fans. It is a Catch-22 for these children who come in large numbers from their villages and are held hostages by their owners. These boys do not even dare to run back home for fear of reprisals. And they earn a pittance and some crumbs. Of course, exploitation of labor is a world-wide phenomenon. Some of us are glorified slaves who toil from dawn to dusk. Life must go on. There are many more hungry stomachs knocking on the doors.

    March 7, 2011 at 11:52 am | Reply
  28. scorpio

    how come you forgot the most rampant and biggest slavery mode in US:
    illelag immigrants for low skilled & h1/l1 visa labors for high skilled...US being the biggest center of modern day slavery 🙂

    March 7, 2011 at 11:55 am | Reply
    • PRISM1234

      US has clever ways to disguise their dirty work, by labeling it under names of "free trade, free market, Wall-Street, etc. , which unregulated, unrestrained (ultra) capitalism hails as "good for the country". Those who profit by this system are Investing endless $$$$ in propaganda to brainwash the masses of people to keep them lulibied, that's how they get by with it.

      March 7, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Reply
      • Norajo

        I would like to thnkx for the efforts you have put in wniritg this web site. I am hoping the same high-grade blog post from you in the upcoming also. Actually your creative wniritg skills has inspired me to get my own website now. Actually the blogging is spreading its wings fast. Your write up is a great example of it.

        October 11, 2012 at 3:05 am |
    • Raisah

      Here, here, Scorpio! And let us not forget the US Prison Industrial Complex! The US is the biggest center of Modern Day Slavery, indeed!!

      March 8, 2011 at 11:54 am | Reply
    • newuniverse

      Full text: Apology to Aborigines
      The following is the historic formal apology given to the Aboriginal people of Australia by Prime Minister Kevin Rudd on behalf of its parliament and government.

      Today we honour the Indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.

      We reflect on their past mistreatment.

      We reflect in particular on the mistreatment of those who were stolen generations – this blemished chapter in our nation's history.

      The time has now come for the nation to turn a new page in Australia's history by righting the wrongs of the past and so moving forward with confidence to the future.

      We apologise for the laws and policies of successive Parliaments and governments that have inflicted profound grief, suffering and loss on these our fellow Australians.

      We apologise especially for the removal of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children from their families, their communities and their country.

      For the pain, suffering and hurt of these stolen generations, their descendants and for their families left behind, we say sorry.

      To the mothers and the fathers, the brothers and the sisters, for the breaking up of families and communities, we say sorry.

      And for the indignity and degradation thus inflicted on a proud people and a proud culture, we say sorry.

      We the Parliament of Australia respectfully request that this apology be received in the spirit in which it is offered as part of the healing of the nation.

      For the future we take heart; resolving that this new page in the history of our great continent can now be written.

      We today take this first step by acknowledging the past and laying claim to a future that embraces all Australians.

      A future where this Parliament resolves that the injustices of the past must never, never happen again.

      A future where we harness the determination of all Australians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, to close the gap that lies between us in life expectancy, educational achievement and economic opportunity.

      A future where we embrace the possibility of new solutions to enduring problems where old approaches have failed.

      A future based on mutual respect, mutual resolve and mutual responsibility.

      A future where all Australians, whatever their origins, are truly equal partners, with equal opportunities and with an equal stake in shaping the next chapter in the history of this great country, Australia.

      March 28, 2011 at 10:58 am | Reply
  29. Lauren Taylor

    Thank you, CNN, for dedicating considerable resources to fighting this battle to end modern slavery. Raising awareness is one of the most important first steps toward change, and you're making a tremendous contribution to the cause.

    Readers will find a comprehensive list of anti-slavery organizations, news, toolkits, best practices and powerful things you can do to help at

    March 7, 2011 at 11:55 am | Reply
  30. CheckTheSource

    Having been living in the U.S. for 15 years, I can see why. Here in the United States, there are 700,000 registered sex offenders, and who knows how many unregistered or undetected. It is like at every street corner, there is a child molester lurking. Child molestation is almost a past time here. In poor countries, the primary reason for human trafficking is abysmal poverty, while in U.D. and European countries, it is pure lust and thrill. Just look how many pasters and rabbis are child molesters and how many Americans are travelling to asian and afiran countries for child prostitues. I think people that are corncerned should take care of the problem at home first – stop the source and cut the demand.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Reply
    • alba

      Get a clue!!! Child slavery is in foreign countries more than the US. If you are not from the US, you need to go back from where you came from and get the facts straight. Pedophiles are everywhere in every nation, city, occupation. The source is not from the US, the source is sin from humans. Point blank. God did not intend anyone, from anywhere to perform disgusting acts on helpless children or teenagers. Look how many foreigners come here who are not supposed to be here, kidnap children and hurt them. Google child molestors from foreign countries and I bet you will see an enourmous amount. The problem is everywhere!!!!!!

      March 7, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Reply
      • PRISM1234

        It looks that some can not stand the fact that this country is not what it wants to portray to the world to be, a beacon of righteousness in the earth! And when someone exposes the rottenness in it, it's the usual "if you don't like it, leave!" How pathetic!
        Isn't this country the one that makes enormous profits by producing the garbage they dare to call entertainment, which they send to pollute the whole world with it? Isn't in this country that a woman can not go take a walk in the street of a ordinary town, in twilight of the day, without being dragged by a p@rvert, being raped and assaulted and dehumenized.... and that's an every day happening, and people here have become numb to it... It's not so in other civilized countries!!! I live in US, and have been here few decades now, but I have seen no reason in which this country has preeminence to exalt and boast itself arrogantly against other nations! It's all hot air, puffed in the wind! And you know what God df said about the comes before destruction, and this country needs to pay attention to these words!

        March 7, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
      • Jesus

        The subsequent time I learn a blog, I hope that it dnoset disappoint me as much as this one. I imply, I know it was my option to read, but I actually thought youd have one thing attention-grabbing to say. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something that you might fix for those who werent too busy on the lookout for attention.

        October 11, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  31. ken100

    Slavery, according to current research, is about 16,000 years old. The first written record of slavery dates to around 1700 BC. The source of slavery is, of course, Africa as that is where man evolved. Slavery pre-dates Europeans. There are many cultures that still embrace slavery. Whether it be conquered tribes, children, or women. Until these cultures evolve or can be forced to change, slavery will continue. African Americans turn out to be the lucky slaves! If they had been left in Africa they would be dead from HIV, malaria, or another tribe's arrow!

    March 7, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Reply
  32. james

    Please tell the NAACP that slavery is not caused by the Confederate flag.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Reply
  33. Allan Wolman

    CNN mentions that there are over 30 million slaves in the world today – they fail to mention the 90 – 100 million young girls between the ages of 9 – 12 years sold into forced marriages (which is slavery and worse in disguise) mainly in the Middle East and Africa yet the U.N Human Rights Commission has yet to pass a single resolution against any country practicing this abuse of human rights but has passed 36 out of 50 resolutions against Israel since 2006! Clearly slavery is low on the UNHCR’s radar!

    March 7, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Reply
  34. norcalmojo

    This article is dancing around the problem. It's too politically correct to name any names.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:39 pm | Reply
  35. Cecilia Heyl

    Did I miss something? Where has CNN reported on the abyssmal conditions of the workers on the projects in the Middle East to do the bidding of the wealthy and conpicuous consumptors of the profits from the oil on which we are so dependent?

    March 7, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Reply
  36. Hunter

    Thanks for the report, but how about naming some countries, people, figures? There is nothing "hard" in this article.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Reply
    • LG

      I couldn't agree more. All I hear are the ads about all the great reporting to be done .... where is it? I am so tired of hearing about all the work CNN is doing on this effort.... just never seem to get there for the real story.

      September 5, 2011 at 4:49 am | Reply
      • Migangbileswar

        Thank you for the sensible crtiique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our local library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such wonderful info being shared freely out there.

        October 11, 2012 at 8:04 pm |
  37. Steve

    Semantics. Mortgage, credit cards, and other loans are modern day forms of enslavement by banks and big business. The same way the pirates put coins in the bottom of your mug when they gave you a beer and then said you accepted payment to work on a pirate ship.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
  38. Ila

    Kudos to CNN that for raising awareness of this HUGE issue!

    March 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
  39. bbebetter

    The difference between the US and most of the other countries mentioned is that the US has strict laws against all forms of human-trafficking and "slavery" and prosecutes it severely. I feel like whenever sordid topic like this comes up, there are always people who want to portray the US as being "just as bad" as everyone else. Not so.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:55 pm | Reply
    • James

      The issue is much more complex than just the implementation of law. Much of the problem is the issue of identification of victims in the first place. Then it is compounded by the fact that the institutions which are supposed to protect those who are enslaved are unable to do so either because they are unwilling or unable to because of the way that the law is written. The cold fact is that our laws here in the US need work. They need to be driven by not just idealism but by pragmatism as well.

      March 7, 2011 at 9:43 pm | Reply
  40. bbebetter

    If CNN wanted to highlight this a little better, they could make this story the top story on the home page, instead of the story about the priest who does exorcisms, or before that the "Michigan fish test," or before that Justin Bieber's haircut, etc.

    March 7, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Reply
  41. Adam

    Nobody here should be fooled. This is anti-prostitution campaign plain and simple. The stories about “forced labor” are there just to feign concern so that anti-prostitution advocates can immunize themselves from criticism and cloak their true intentions of banning prostitution globally. Go read the laws being pushed by The Polaris Project on all the states. Every one of those laws includes language to throw people in jail for prostitution.

    I recommend that everyone read The Oregonian article (here: from one of the few journalists who have actually dug into this issue. Her finding: most of the numbers thrown around about “trafficking” are bogus. In fact Malika Saada Saar has already repeated some of these bogus numbers on these very pages.

    March 7, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Reply
  42. Adam

    Furthermore, on these very pages, you will read about Sweden’s “Sex Purchase Law”, arresting the purchasers of sex but allowing the prostitutes to go free. This may slow down prostitution in Sweden, but Swedish men by the tens of thousands go to other countries for prostitutes. And not one of them (or any other man from a Nordic country) has ever been prosecuted for purchasing sex from an adult abroad.

    March 7, 2011 at 1:26 pm | Reply
  43. william joseph guingona

    It is both heartening and unconscionable to know that there is a staggering 10-30 million slaves worldwide! It is difficult to fathom that perpetrators of this dastardly act continue unabated reaching unimaginable proportion. it is high time that people around the world should unite to put an end to this reprobate industry, mercilessly victimizing hapless individuals into forced labor, raped and abused and are made to disappear after to become useless.

    March 7, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Reply
  44. Kira J.

    Check out how one group is building a hostel in Thailand so Lahu tribal families can freely educate their children instead of selling them into slavery. They are accepting financial contributions and offer opportunities to sponsor at-risk Lahu children.

    March 7, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Reply
    • David A. Feingold, Ph.D.

      The Lahu are NOTwaiting around to sell their children. Generous souls interested helping the Lahu, Akha, Lisu and other hill tribe people in Thailand would be better off supporting programs that help villages develop sustainable livlihoods, rather than those which luring supposedly "at risk" children away from their parents.

      March 11, 2011 at 1:23 am | Reply
  45. Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

    Dear Mr Maddox,
    The worst culprits are in Africa and especially in Nigeria where I reside.Innocent young girls, especially, from Edo State are routinely shipped to Italy usually with the consent of their treacherous families.That much has been reported widely and it's another good starting point.Secondly, though this may rather be belated since the action has been taken, the accounts of these traffickers can be frozen like those of narcotics dealers and corrupt politicians. In fact, since you mentioned the annual worth of this heinous and illicit trade , it's a foregone conclusion.
    Yours sincerely,
    Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

    March 7, 2011 at 2:14 pm | Reply
  46. Summer819

    The picture with this story really captured my attention. I realize it is a very ugly reality, but I'm curious if they can sell these striking pictures to help raise money necessary to help the cause.

    March 7, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Reply
  47. Marta hatter

    check out;

    March 7, 2011 at 3:12 pm | Reply
  48. Christian Trent

    I am so blessed to see voices arising to confront this injustice we call human trafficking. May justice prevail!


    March 7, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Reply
  49. John Kaufman, Oceanside, CA

    Once again is the USA suppose to fix all the world problems.? Yes, I know this is diplorable slavery, but the fact of the matter is we live in a civilized country and a lot of other countries are not ciivilized. What is needed is to catch those responsbile if possible for this and execute them immediately, ie pirates who killed those Americans. Isn't the United Nations primary job to resolve problems like this? If they are doing nothing, ie Lybia also, then I say get the US out of the UN immediately and do not pay into this joke organization one dime. Our coutnry should adopt a policy as follows: If you mess with us we will fight you to win, no rules of engagement. We don't prop up corrupt govts. If we fight you we will not rebuild you on the rubble we inflict upon you ever. We tell the world, America can be your friend and will treat you fairly, ONLY if you do the same to us. We will conduct ourselves consistently to our values, but if your values conflict to ours we will not have much in common, and will more than likely have little to do with you.

    March 7, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Reply
    • PRISM1234

      Friend, that will never happen, America is corrupt to the core, given over to greed, and corrupted. Why, only take a look at American Corporations, and the slave labor they exploit to make their billions while the workers live in slums undernourished and destitute. And the only way anyone finds out about it, is if they sneak in undercover, endangering their lives. Come on, people, this country is like a whitewashed tomb with stench of rottenness inside!

      March 8, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Reply
  50. Sam, houston, TX

    Let me tell you about the slavery that happens in the USA by Americans and goes undocumented. You can ask any computer engineer who has come here on a H1B visa. The "body shoppers" as these recruits are called, hire well qualified people from India, Pakistan, Srilanka and other foreign countries and bring them here. Then they use these people like slaves. Do not pay them, pay them less wages, sometimes take their passports... the carrot they use is " I will apply for your permanent residency cardand ocne you get that, you are free' and the stick is "no pay, less pay, or work double the time"... they make people stay in apartments – 8 – 10 in one apartment. They call it the guest house. No medical insurance, no nothing. Not even the money to go back to their home country. Stay here 'on the bench" as it is called. If you get a good project you can make millions. .. the game goes on... and if you fight, they will say, " I will revoke your H1 Visa and you willbe on your streets.." The condition of these smart engineers is much better than the condition of the slaves in other parts ofthe world but the educated people of the US participating in this 'body shiopping' is deplorable.

    March 7, 2011 at 4:03 pm | Reply
  51. nazzina, bangladesh

    Cover Bangladesh too. People here are cheated to travel to far away countries where they are forced to work in an inhumane condition- kept unpaid for months with no option to travel back as their passports are taken away on arrival.

    March 7, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Reply
  52. tonybaldwin

    I'm surprised you don't mention, also, Haley Williams and Paramour, who have also been campaigning for, an organization based here in my home city, New Haven, CT, that works to end slavery, free slaves, and, even more importantly, provide a therapeutic environment for freed slaves to recover and be reintegrated into society.

    March 7, 2011 at 5:46 pm | Reply
  53. AC

    Reality check ! Thanks to CNN for reporting the reality !
    Every word of support for the enslaved will add to the collective concience. Concience is said to drive thinking, which shapes decision and propels actions. There are so many powerful media and network tools to help us communicate and educate people across the globe and why not put them to good use.
    One project is not likely to stop slavery aross the globe but one project may save many children from peril.

    March 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm | Reply
  54. AesopsRetreat c o m

    Why do they always show Blacks as slaves when talking about Modern Day Slavery when they know most Slaves now are White Females, stolen off the streets as children and forced into a Sex Slave business when they become "ripe"?

    March 7, 2011 at 9:10 pm | Reply
  55. Jill Brenneman

    Demi Moore and may other celebrities that have taken up the cause of human trafficking push a political agenda funded by the US which does worldwide harm to both sex slaves and to sex workers. Agencies and activists that endorse the abolition of prostitution through sweeping criminalization only take recourse away from both sex slaves and sex workers. As long as either is considered a criminal, neither has the resource of law enforcement to protect them either from traffickers or those who rape, torture, and assault prostitutes both enslaved and consenting. People can and will not trust a justice system that will likely arrest them first. How is a trafficking victim/sex slave going to escape to the police if she fears they will arrest her? How is a consenting sex worker viciously raped by a client going to go to the police for justice if they will arrest her. Arrest the traffickers, arrest the criminals that rape and assault sex workers. Blanket arrests that arrest both the sex slave and consenting sex worker only work toward helping criminals isolate and harm them. This is a nuanced problem that requires nuanced answers, not just the typical US response of Declaring WAr on.................... For the record, before someone tells me I don't know what I'm talking about. Yeah I do. As a former sex slave here in the US, born in the US, that got away only on a fluke that later ended up back in sex work due to economic need only to be violently raped by a quasi law enforcement agent. I know first hand the harm done by current policy. Current policy is as strong a shackle binding the slave to the trafficker, the sex worker to the rapist as the criminals themselves. Shackles can be invisible and come in the form of misguided legislation and as a result anyone in the sex trade slave or consenting can end up where I was more than once. A devastated victim lying on a floor someplace.

    March 7, 2011 at 9:40 pm | Reply
    • Maggie McNeill

      Jill knows whereof she speaks firsthand, and Laura Agustin ( has studied prostitution and migration for many years; she is probably the world's foremost authority on the subject, and she constantly works to point out the harm done by intentional conflation of sex work with trafficking, migration with trafficking, etc. You might also find this essay interesting: It's by Ann Jordan, the director of the Program on Human Trafficking and Forced Labor at the Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, American University Washington College of Law. And it is ABSOLUTELY OPPOSED to the ridiculous notion that sex trafficking can be defeated by criminalizing prostitution.

      March 7, 2011 at 10:07 pm | Reply
      • Tuxinedo

        what i have notice through experience these so called "expert foremost authority" means nothing at all otherwise, they do get absolutely no clues sometimes whats happening......... world Financial problems recently could not arise with all the well paid jerks on Govt/banks/wallstreet/Federal reserves/senate commitees etc and their expertise.......hehehe

        March 7, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
      • swoplv

        And something that can actually help people at risk of being forced into any kind of labor is better economic opportunities, more social justice, and more agency w/ less prejudice for migrant workers. Throwing more laws at prostitution not only wastes valuable resources but does absolutely nothing to help the situation.

        March 9, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
    • swoplv

      Excellent post, Jill! Thank you for bringing your truth here.

      I think it is very easy for the armchair philanthropist and human rights activist to jump on board with all of the hyperbole surrounding the sex trafficking hysteria. The way the rescue industry has spun this propaganda to increase their funding is sick, and lazy folks who want to feel good about themselves for "doing something about it" will buy it hook, line, and sinker, without realizing the harm all of this does to actual people on the ground in bad situations, and to those consenting adult sex workers just trying to live their lives. Folks, please do your own research. The figures quoted in the article are way out of left field. Nobody does their own research anymore- they all just parrot bad "facts" and statistics parroted by someone else along the way, and then you have a case of Chinese Telephone (the game where someone whispers something to a person next to them in a circle of people, and then that person whispers it to the person next to them, and by the time it gets back to the original person, it is not even remotely similar to the original statement). CNN should know better. But I suppose that "Fox Syndrome" is infecting all the so-called news outlets...

      In case anyone wishes to do some research, here are some links to things that will educate people beyond the parroting in this article:

      The GAO debunks the official human-trafficking estimates

      UNESCO Trafficking Statistics Project

      The Elusive Link Between Sex Trafficking and Sporting Events

      The Social Construction of Sex Trafficking: Ideology and Institutionalization of a Moral Crusade (pdf article by Ron Weitzer)

      March 9, 2011 at 2:40 pm | Reply
      • swoplv

        Forgot one:

        Collateral Damage: Impact of Anti-Trafficking Measures on Human Rights Around the World
        (function() { var scribd = document.createElement("script"); scribd.type = "text/javascript"; scribd.async = true; scribd.src = "#{root_url}javascripts/embed_code/inject.js"; var s = document.getElementsByTagName("script")[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(scribd, s); })()

        March 9, 2011 at 2:43 pm |
  56. Jon

    This is terrible crime against humanity. Sex slavery is more widespread than most are aware of. is at the forefront of helping women and children out of sex slavery. Please take a look at this cause.

    March 7, 2011 at 11:01 pm | Reply
  57. Jack

    I really welcome this initiative,will you also be covering the Middle East countries that use the sponsorship programme.I've retweeted 2 articles on the abuse of maids in the GCC region.

    March 8, 2011 at 12:05 am | Reply
  58. Wilfred

    Put an end to the Modern-day slavery! why slavery still exists in the modern society? It's because of the past. Western world needs to say SORRY to the poor nations.

    March 8, 2011 at 2:34 am | Reply
  59. Andrew Hunter

    I hope Tony Maddox as Executive Vice President and Managing Director of CNN International requires better fact checking from his journalists than he has done in putting up estimates of trafficking numbers. UNODC's figures are unreliable as are he US governments- which have been shown to be false by an investigation by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO)
    Basing policy and campaigns on false and misleading numbers is something to expect from all the organisations lining up to line their pockets in the millions upon millons of dollars being thrown around for anti-trafficking organisations- including UNODC and a number of other UN organisations. It's also to be expected from faded stars who want to use it to boost sagging careers. But most of us would expect better from a global news organisation....

    March 8, 2011 at 7:29 am | Reply
    • Jill Brenneman

      Very well said Andrew! Thank you!

      March 8, 2011 at 1:49 pm | Reply
  60. Meg

    "It is a story which is shocking and tough" - and also reads as if it had been written by a semi-literate college intern. A lot of hype and too few (reliable) facts.

    March 8, 2011 at 7:43 am | Reply
  61. olaniyan mayowa

    Thw cnn freedom project is one of the best projects that had existed over the years. The initiative's effect, i believe will be felt all over the world in this year 2011 and i am confident that this project will go a long way in mitigating any form of slavery.

    March 8, 2011 at 8:22 am | Reply
  62. Laura Agustín

    Good heavens, every ill-informed stereotype in the book is reproduced here. Is this the level CNN wants people to think it has as a news and investigation organisation? The US Government Accounting Office is amongst the biggest critics of these crazy statistics. Anyone wanting to read actual studies and think for themselves will find many resources on my website. I have been a researcher of migration and sex-industry issues for more than 15 years.

    Laura Agustín

    March 8, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Reply
  63. Kimberly,Apopka,FL

    When the report mentioned UN helping, what a joke! The UN for years has known this goes on and looks the other way! I truly hope these other Organisations can honestly do a better job in exposing these crimes. Will this problem really ever go away? Doubtful but as long as we keep turning the lights on these cockroaches, it will make it harder doing what they do. Maybe save someones life!

    March 9, 2011 at 12:48 am | Reply
    • Allan Wolman

      Your mention of the UN is only too true. Whilst 90-100 million young girls in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia are sold into forced marriage every year – which is slavery of the worst kind – the UN Human Rights Council are too consumed with demonizing Israel than the plight of this abuse of Human rights that they turn a blind eye.
      The commissioner of the UNHRC from South Africa supported the Libyan membership to this body and worse still has had a motion of praise for Libya's human rights contribution to this body on their agenda for a meeting of the Council on 18 March and was only removed this last Monday after more than 4 weeks of slaughter of the civilian population.

      March 9, 2011 at 4:35 am | Reply
  64. Marisa Ugarte

    Dear CNN There are indeed many organizations doing good work out there who are not part of "Habitat for Humanity" the (E-bay group the "ebay group ") the select group mentioned by your director and who really need funding for the work they are grass roots....and who risk their lives every day, who do not make millions in campaigns,who do not write books and are truly dedicated to saving lives. Groups that can not afford to travel,who don't have media and marketing positions and use the money for service. Would you like a list of these non profits?

    March 9, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Reply
  65. Lal

    Dear CNN stop being a propragandist fool. The best the americans can do to towards human rights is by minding their own business. And no I am not a muslim or chinese. peace .

    March 10, 2011 at 9:24 am | Reply
  66. Chris

    I would like to see CNN news organization do a full report on the lies, myths and exaggerated numbers being told about sex trafficking slaves. The articles about the super bowl sex slaves, has been proved wrong many times, but news organizations still report about it as fact.

    According to the media hype There was supposed to be hundreds of thousands of under age child sex slaves kidnapped and forced to have sex with super bowl fans. At the Dallas Super Bowl 2011. WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL OF THEM???????????? Where are they???????????????

    Well, as I predicted it was all a lie by the Dallas Women’s Foundation which is a anti-prostitution group that in order to get grant money from the government and charities to pay their high salaries. As proved in the link below:

    Top FBI agent in Dallas sees no evidence of expected spike in child sex trafficking

    In recent years, every time there has been a major international sporting event, a group of government officials, campaigning feminists, pliant journalists and NGOs have claimed that the movement of thousands of men to strange foreign countries where there will be lots of alcohol and horniness will result in the enslavement of underage sex slaves for the purposes of sexual pleasure. Obviously. And every time they have simply doubled the made-up scare figures from the last international sporting event, to make it look like this problem of sport/sex/slavery gets worse year on year. Yet each year it is proved false.

    This myth of thousands or millions of underage sex slaves tries to make every sports fan a sex criminal. No matter what the sport is, or in what country it is in.

    Brian McCarthy isn't happy. He's a spokesman for the NFL. Every year he's forced to hear why his customers are adulterers and child molesters. Brian McCarthy says the sport/super bowl sex slave story is a urban legend, with no truth at all.

    ==World Cup 2010 ==
    Again using the made up number of 40,000 prostitutes trafficked:
    The behavior of fans in South Africa has run contrary to what was predicted prior to the start of the tournament after David Bayever told World Cup organizers in March it was feared that up to 40,000 extra prostitutes could converge in the host nation to meet the expected demand. Bayever, deputy chairperson of South Africa's Central Drug Authority (CDA) that advises on drug abuse but also works with prostitutes, warned: "Forty-thousand new prostitutes. As if we do not have enough people of our own, we have to import them to ensure our visitors are entertained."
    But the tournament in 2010, if anything, has seen the modern-day soccer fan attracted to art galleries and museums over brothels.
    A trend that has seen a drop in revenue across the board for the prostitution industry, which is illegal in South Africa. "Zobwa," the chairperson of Sisonke - an action group representing around 70 street prostitutes in Johannesburg - said business had been down over the last month. "The World Cup has been devastating. We thought it was going to be a cash cow but it's chased a lot of the business away. It's been the worst month in my company's history," the owner and founder of one of Johannesburg's most exclusive escort companies told CNN.

    CNN Link:

    == World Cup 2006 ==
    Politicians, religious and aid groups, still repeat the media story that 40,000 prostitutes were trafficked intoGermany for the 2006 world cup – long after leaked police documents revealed there was no truth at all in the tale. A baseless claim of 25,000 trafficking victims is still being quoted, recently, for example, by the Salvation Army in written evidence to the home affairs select committee, in which they added: "Other studies done by media have suggested much higher numbers.” Which has been proven by the German police to be completely false. Yet people still talk about these false numbers as if it were fact.

    In recent years, every time there has been a major international sporting event, a group of government officials, campaigning feminists, pliant journalists and NGOs have claimed that the movement of thousands of men to strange foreign countries where there will be lots of alcohol and horniness will result in the enslavement of women for the purposes of sexual pleasure. Obviously. And every time they have simply doubled the made-up scare figures from the last international sporting event, to make it look like this problem of sport/sex/slavery gets worse year on year. Yet each year it is proved false.
    This myth tries to make every sports fan a sex criminal. No matter what the sport is, or in what country it is in. These anti-prostitution groups need to in invent a victim that does not exist in order to get press attention.
    I do not like the idea of people getting the wrong information and believing lies, no matter what the topic is. The Sex trafficking, slavery issue is one of the biggest lies being told today. It is amazing to me how people will believe such lies so easily. The media is to blame for this. I wonder why they feel such a need to report wrong stats, numbers and information about this topic without doing proper research.

    While this may happen in very rare limited situations, the media will say that millions of people are sex slaves without doing any real research on the topic. Only taking the word of special interest anti-prostitution groups which need to generate money in the form of huge government grants from taxpayers, and charities. These "non profit" group's employees make huge salaries, therefore they need to lobby the government, and inflate and invent victims in order to get more money into their organizations. If you look into how many real kidnapped forced against their will sex slaves there are, and not just take the anti-prostitution groups word for it. You will be very surprised.
    Where are all the forced sex slaves? I would like to meet the millions of slaves and see for myself if they were kidnapped and forced against their will.

    These groups lobby the government in a big way, getting Politicians to truly believe their lies.

    This is an attempt to over inflate an issue in order to get more government money to these organizations. As a tax payer, voter, and resident I don’t want the government to mislead me.

    I would like to see your news organization do a full report on the lies, myths and exaggerated numbers being told about sex trafficking slaves. The articles about the super bowl sex slaves, has been proved wrong many times, but news organizations still report about it, as if it were fact.

    Millions of USA government dollars are being spent to fight a crime that is extremely rare. The US government assumes that all prostitutes on Earth are sex trafficked slaves. Forced into it against their will. This is NOT true of MOST women.

    The numbers of sex trafficking sex slaves:
    There is a lot of controversy over the numbers of adult woman who are forced sex slaves. The real factual answer is that no one knows. There is hard evidence that the sex slavery/sex trafficking issue continues to report false information and is greatly exaggerated by politicians, the media, and aid groups, feminist and religious organizations that receive funds from the government, The estimate of adult women who become new sex slaves ranges anywhere from 40 million a year to 5,000 per year all of which appear to be much too high. They have no evidence to back up these numbers, and no one questions them about it. Their sources have no sources, and are made up numbers. In fact if some of these numbers are to believed which have either not changed or have been increased each year for the past twenty years, all woman on earth would currently be sex slaves. Yet, very few real forced against their will sex slaves have been found.

    It is not easy for criminals to engage in this acitvity:
    Sex trafficking/Slavery is illegal and the pentities are very severe. It is very difficult to force someone to be a sex slave, they would have to have 24 hour guards posted and be watched 365 days a year, 24 hours per day. Have the threat of violence if they refused, and have no one notice and complain to the authorities or police. They would need to hide from the general public yet still manage to see customers from the general public. They would need to provide them with medical care, food, shelter, and have all their basic needs met. They would need to have the sex slaves put on a fake front that they enjoyed what they were doing, act flirtatious and do their job well. They would have to deal with the authorities looking for the missing women, and hide any money they may make, since it comes from illegal activity. They must do all of this while constantly trying to prevent the sex slaves from escaping and reporting them to the police. This is extremely difficult to do, which makes this activity rare. These criminals would be breaking dozens of major laws not just one. Kidnapping itself is a serious crime. There are many laws against sex trafficking, sex slavery, kidnapping, sex abuse, rape, sexual harassment etc. If someone is behind it, they will be breaking many serious laws, be in big trouble, and will go to jail for many long years.
    While there are some women who may be true victims. And it is possible for this to happen in rare situations. This is a small rare group of people and that the numbers and scale of this crime is exaggerated. The very nature of someone pulling off a kidnapping and forced sex for profit appears to be very difficult. Since it would be difficult this makes this crime rare. Not impossible, but extremely rare.

    A key point is that on the sidelines the prostitutes themselves are not being listened to. They oppose laws against prostitution. But no one wants to listen to the prostitutes themselves. Only to the self appointed experts that make up numbers and stories many of which have never met a real forced sex slave or if they did it was only a few. The media and government never ask the prostitutes themselves what would help them in terms of laws.

    Many women in the sex business are independent workers. They don’t have a pimp.
    They work for themselves, advertise themselves, and keep all the money for themselves. No one forces them, because there isn’t anyone to force them. They go out and find their own customers, set their own prices, and arrange everything by themselves. Sometimes they may employ others to help them, but these are not pimps. If for example, she hires an internet web design company to make a website for her, does that make the web design company a pimp? If she pays a phone company for a phone to do business, does this make the phone company a pimp? If she puts an ad in the paper, does this make the editor a pimp? If she puts the money she makes into a bank account does this make the bank a pimp?

    A lot of anti prostitution groups would say yes. Everyone and everybody is a pimp.
    These groups make up lies, and false statistics that no one bothers to check. A big reason they do this is because it provides high paying jobs for them. They get big donations, and grants from the government, charity, churches, etc. to have these groups, and pay these workers.

    The Sex Trafficking/Slavery idea is used to outlaw all prostitution around the world by saying that all women are victims even if they do it willing. This hurts any real victims because it labels all sex workers as victims. Everything I heard about this problem was Americans complaining about it, but I never heard from the so-called victims themselves complaining about it. Why is that? Many of the self appointed experts complaining about this have never even met or seen a real forced against their will victim.
    The problems I see with the sex traffic idea is that suppose some of the women were not forced into this type of prostitution, but were willing and wanted to do this type of work, and went out of their way to do this type of work. (It is a lot of fast easy money, they don’t need a degree, or a green card.)
    All they have to do is lie and say that someone forced them into it. When perhaps, no one did.
    If a illegal allien for example is the victim all they have to do is lie and here are their benefits based on the USA anti-traffic prostitution laws:
    1. They don’t have to go to jail or be arrested.
    2. They get to stay and live in America , and become U.S. citizens
    3. The U.S. Government will provide them with housing, food, education and will cater to them since they will be considered victims. . They will be considered victimed refugees, and can become American citizens.
    The way I see it is that this USA government system will encourage people to lie in order to receive all the benefits listed above.
    While there are some women who may be true victims. This is a small rare group of people.

    What hard evidence does the police have that these women were forced slaves? Were all the women that the police saw in fact slaves? Did the police prove without a doubt due to hard concrete evidence that the women were victims of being slaves and forced against their will? Did they account for all the benefits they would receive if they lied?
    I find it very hard to believe that most women in this business are forced against their will to do it. It would just be too difficult. There may be some exceptions but, I believe this is an attempt to over inflate an issue in order to get more government money to these organizations. As a tax payer, voter, and resident I don’t want the government to mislead me.

    == In the United Kingdom ==
    In October, 2009 – The biggest ever investigation of sex trafficking failed to find a single person who had forced anybody into prostitution in spite of hundreds of raids on sex workers in a six-month campaign by government departments, specialist agencies and every police force in the country. The failure has been disclosed by a Guardian investigation which also suggests that the scale of and nature of sex trafficking into the UK has been exaggerated by politicians and media.
    Nick Davis of the Guardian newspaper writes:
    Current and former ministers have claimed that thousands of women have been imported into the UK and forced to work as sex slaves, but most of these statements were either based on distortions of quoted sources or fabrications without any source at all.

    == In the USA ==
    On August 5, 2008
    U.S. Justice Department Inspector General Glenn Fine uncovered discrepancies in a program dedicated to cracking down on human trafficking, McClatchy Newspapers report. Former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales spent millions of dollars on combating the international trafficking of indentured servants and sex slaves, including by creating task forces across the U.S. that identified and helped victims. Over four years, the department paid $50 million to the task forces and other groups. Conservative groups, who pressured the administration to go after sex trafficking more aggressively, applauded his efforts.
    Critics have questioned whether the problem was being hyped. Fine found in an audit issued that the task forces and other groups set up to help were 'significantly' overstating the number of victims they served. By examining a sampling of cases, Fine found the task forces had exaggerated by as much as 165 percent. Making matters worse, the inflated numbers were included in annual reports to Congress.

    ===In India and Nepal ===
    If media reports are to be believed, there would be no young girls left in Nepal . Oft-quoted figures such as 5,000-7,000 Nepali girls being trafficked across the border toIndia every year and 150,000-200,000 Nepali women and girls being trapped in brothels in various Indian cities, were first disseminated in 1986, and have remained unaltered over the next two decades. The report that first quoted these statistics was from the Indian Health Association, Mumbai, written by AIDS Society of India secretary general, Dr. I S Gilada, and presented in a workshop in 1986. Subsequently, a version of this report was published as an article in The Times of India on January 2, 1989 . To date, the source of this figure remains a mystery. Unfortunately, such a lack of clarity is more the norm than the exception when it comes to reporting on trafficking in women and girls.

    There needs to be a distinct separation of
    1. Child sex trafficking
    2. Adult sex Trafficking
    3. Adult consensual
    4. Sex Slavery

    They are not the same. Adult Women are NOT children.
    Media coverage of trafficking and adult women's migration and sex work is confused and inaccurate. The media wrongly uses the terms 'sex work' and 'trafficking' and adult sex work and child sex trafficking synonymously, perpetuating stereotypes and stigmatization, and contributing to the violation of women's right to free movement and livelihood options. They assume that if any woman moves from place to place for sex work that they are being trafficking. The media, politicians, aid groups, feminist, and religious organizations does not take into account that she may do this of her own free will. Too often women are treated like children. Adult women are not children.

    Most migrant women, including those in the sex industry, have made a clear decision, says a new study, to leave home and take their chances abroad. They are not "passive victims" in need of "saving" or sending back by western campaigners.

    Sex Trafficking/Slavery is used by many groups as a attempt to outlaw all prostitution around the world by saying that all women are victims even if they do it willing. This hurts any real victims because it labels all sex workers as victims.

    This is done by the media, aid groups, NGO’s, feminists, politicians, and religious organizations that receive funds from the government. There are very strong groups who promote that all adult women who have sex are victims even if they are willing, enjoy it and go out of there way to get it. These groups try to get the public to believe that no adult women in their right mind would ever go into the sex business unless she was forced to do so, weather she knew it or not. They say that 100% of all sex workers are trafficking victims. They do this in order to label all men as sex offenders and wipe out all consensual prostitution. Which is what their real goal is. There is almost no one who challenges or questions them about their false beliefs. Therefore, the only voices you hear are of these extreme groups. These groups want to label all men as terrible sex offenders for seeing a willing adult sex worker. No one stands up to say this is foolish, the passive public says nothing. These groups even say that all men who marry foreign women are terrible sex predators who take advange of these "helpless foreign women wives".

    These groups believe that two adults having consensual sex in private should be outlawed. Since they believe that it is impossible for a man to have sex with a woman without abusing the woman in the process.

    This is an example of feminists and other groups exploiting the suffering of a small minority of vulnerable and abused women in order to further their own collective interests. For example, getting money from the government and Charity into their organizations. Rather than wanting to find the truth.

    The following links will give you more information about sex trafficking especially the Washington post article and the Guardian and BBC links.

    Washington post article:

    News night BBC video:


    Guardian newspaper:

    March 10, 2011 at 2:36 pm | Reply
  67. Will

    This is like "Farm Aid", "We Are The World" or Biafra back in the late 60's. It's shocking, saddening and all too transient in the minds of people. Celebreties will speak out. Multi-million dollar organizations will be created to "end" the practice. Projects like this will stake out some moral high ground to decry the inhumanity of it all. And then in another 2-3 years it will all become passe as some other cause becomes the focus. CNN plays lip service the actually making change. It makes good press. Folks will get awards for their writing. And the world at large will still tolerate slavery in all it's forms as long as they benefit in some way. New York women will still get thier nails done. Suburban folks will stil get thier cars washed. People will still frequent prostitutes assuming it's a "victimless crime" and business owners round the world will still use child labor so some housewife in Kansas can buy a $19 Chinese-made DVD player

    March 10, 2011 at 3:11 pm | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      You should know that slavery or anything like it is not government policy anywhere in the world, but it's a fall-out of unemployment basically.That's why lots of victims fall into the snare of the traffickers in the first place.
      Of course New York women and those in Ikeja, Lagos(Under bridge) and other locations round the world must get their nails done and their hair as well.Their cars must also be washed.Is that not functional? I think it is.That minors even hawk merchandise in traffic jams is the fault of the family and government in this side of the universe.These minors unfortunately have to cooperate with their less privileged patients to feed the family.It's patently unjust, but it's not slavery.It's a rather extreme form of chores. Prostitution anywhere is illegal and the prostitutes themselves are largely to blame.It's among the worst forms of slavery. I do not know of any minors working in Chinese factories in Nigeria at least. Not at WAHUM or Marc & Mei or any of the Chinese restaurants in the country.I've not heard about minors working in China itself.If anything, that practice has died with the Charles Dickens era.Hasn't it ?

      March 28, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Reply
  68. Richard

    Whilst it is not "consider" as slavery many thousands of women leave their homes from south east Asian nations like the Philippines and Indonesia to work as "domestic helpers" in Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong etc. Many of these will be lucky to get 1 day off a month along with having to sleep on the floor etc.

    Would be interested to know how many CNN staff in Hong Kong have "domestic helpers" and treat them like everyone else treats them, start work at 6am finish at midnight, 1 day off a month, mimimum food, no actual holidays.

    Even though most of these people are educated they cant leave their employers as due to unscruplous agents which are licenced by the governments in their own countries they almost all have to pay about 6 months salary for a 2 year contact.

    Almost every employee of a domestic helper think about how you treat them ... they are humans with feelings as well.

    March 11, 2011 at 1:45 am | Reply
  69. Kelly James

    "In addition to police, judges, prosecutors, and politicians, organized crime also has on its payroll doctors, scientists, and journalists in all media whose job it is to predict and report how terrible life would be if consensual crimes were legalized." – Peter McWilliams, "Ain't Nobody's Business If You Do"

    As McWilliams points out, organized crime's very existance depends on consensual crimes remaining illegal.

    Hmmmm. Kinda makes one wonder just how corrupt the system actually is.

    Criminalization of sex work, like criminalization of drugs, turns both into big business for the criminals. This is organized crime we're dealing with and the war on trafficking is lining criminals' pockets with gold. Meanwhile their victims remain lying helpless on the floor.

    March 11, 2011 at 4:51 am | Reply
  70. ethinytoorn

    sokat tanultam

    March 11, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Reply
  71. Aveseh

    Child Labor violates Child right laws...But is Child Labor Slavery?

    March 15, 2011 at 5:51 pm | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Hi Aveseh,
      I do know minors are prohibited from working by law, but within the family they are obliged to do some chores like washing the car, sweeping and taking out the garbage.It's part of what is generally called home training world-wide. I did it too as a minor.

      March 28, 2011 at 1:38 pm | Reply
  72. Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

    I believe that you must have observed that victims of human trafficking and their captors travel by sea and by road often in dehumanizing conditions.They don't travel by air.Do they?
    If they don't,then we might as well begin by listing the porous Nigerian boarders and others like them worldwide and question their claims to sanity too.

    March 28, 2011 at 11:48 am | Reply
  73. Larry Daley

    I have a comment/question. My sister lives in New York and works for the YMCA where she says she is paid $100.00 every two weeks. She works 4 hours day and five days a week. My question is why is it that an American institution is allowed to pay a person such a petty salary? She has been unemployed for sometime and I know is afraid to complain. I would like some answers. That sounds like slave labor to me.

    April 5, 2011 at 9:50 pm | Reply
  74. Rick J

    Thank you Tony Maddox for writing this article. I fear that many would run away from what may at first seem to be such a pervasive issue that change is a nebulous impossibility – I'm so encouraged to see CNN taking this project on and including reference to some excellent ngo organizations.

    April 7, 2011 at 10:49 am | Reply
  75. Mina

    I really don't get this program and don't see where CNN is going to help anyone. Instead of asking the public to make donations why are they not giving all the proceeds from the companies who knows these programs are about degrading women yet they flock to advertise. All CNN is doing is documentaries which is stupid we already know what is happening and we also know as long as there are men there will be sex slaves. Those that dont use it know there is big money to be made from those who do. Before we go and try to help the females in other countries we need to clean up the USA first. Almost all the filth starts here and is then exported. Every reality show and even adverts are suggestive of women and all they are good for is sex. Even the advert for Viagra has a woman smiling so much because the man can now have sex. Women in america can't wait to take their clothes even the so called celebrities. I think we have gone so far back in time it is unbelievable. Why cant women understand that without us the whoe society would shut down instead we allow ourselves to degrade other women. In the media it does not matter what the woman being interviewed has achieved the the only thing the media concentrates on is her appearance and whether she has a beautiful body. Women don't seem to want anything special in a man even if he has one leg and no eye and even if his belly is touching the floor and all his hair is gone they love them. Society needs to teach women to self respect and self esteem You know I could go on and on but what does it matter until women see themselves in a different light it is pointless Only yesterday I saw a Dr Phil program on mistresses and he was really putting the women down and there was not one husband in sight. Without women the whole world would stop but women are taught without a man they have no world so best to forget it all. IT WILL NEVER STOP BUT IT WILL GET WORSE

    May 6, 2011 at 4:07 pm | Reply
    • Oladipo Akinyemi Omole

      Hi Mina,
      Let me say emphatically that the effort is not about degrading women anywhere least of all in the United States.It's not the equivalent of human trafficking,prostitution or pornography which it's seeking to eradicate.Firms donating to the cause share the conviction of CNN International and others on the matter.That's substantial.It matters a lot and adds a lot of credibility to the effort.
      One way society teaches women "self respect and self esteem" is through these documentaries you're condemning.Why are they asking for donations? Well, I think it's safe to say nobody is forced or cajoled to donate.You should also know that distinguished personalities like Demi Moore, Ashton Kutcher and top notchers at the CNN International like Tony Maddox are committed to this cause.They're not part of the trafficking racket.
      It's not accurate to say everybody knows about human trafficking just because you've been so fortunate to peruse the information you now know through CNN International and other sources.It's not accurate too to say "filth is exported from the United States".You do not have a basis for this assertion.The documentaries you're condemning are opposed to filth.Have you been privileged to watch As The World Turns,The Young & The Restless,Guiding Light,Three's Company and Dallas?These programs are not X-rated.Do you understand?
      You did say "...until women see themselves in a different light..." the effort is pointless.Well, you cannot generalize that all women are derelict or vulnerable like victims of trafficking who were ensnared by the vicious circle,because of lack.The lurid and filthy conditions that encourage trafficking don't exist in the US and it appears it's only you that sees this filth.

      May 6, 2011 at 10:00 pm | Reply
  76. KhojNepal

    As an example I would refer to the following report in a Nepali media which reports a special case of slavery in South Korea.
    South Korean man are getting married with Nepalese woman (in Nepal) and then taking them to South Korea where they sell the woman to older men. It was reported that this is not new except the "bride" country has changed.

    May 14, 2011 at 5:40 am | Reply
  77. KhojNepal

    Other form of slavery in foreign land is the case of Maids in Arab countries. I refer to the following article.
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    May 14, 2011 at 5:51 am | Reply



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  79. 2ginasdailypost

    Thank you CNN for your effort and goal in ending this horrific modern day slavery.
    These slaves are working right under our noses, next door, down the street etc.
    I hope you print an article specifically on how everyday people can contribute to this cause, educating the public on awareness, how to spot unusual behavior, business practices etc. where and how to report suspicious people and activity.

    May 22, 2011 at 7:20 pm | Reply
  80. Davis

    Good luck in trying to get it stamped out..
    Unless you can get rid of Islam,whom is the biggest percentage of this.Then you wont stop it.
    Even their politicians say it's ok.. or here . bit here also

    June 13, 2011 at 4:59 am | Reply
  81. ELrod

    There's nothing new under the sun. If your working for someone else other than yourself your a slave. The only difference between us slaves is what we get per day which directly effects each slaves perspective of their situation. If you don't think your a slave then go ask a bunch of people who you think are slaves what their situation is. "Are you guys slaves? You will be shocked at the answer, they will say NO. Nancy Fox who commented above is obviously a well fed and comfortable slave. So much so she had enough calories in her diet to pound out a length reply in CAPs ad nauseum. Nice job CNN of stoking the FUD factor. CNN has successfully channeled most of you to release hormones that are effecting your judgment/behavior. Nothing new here. Your responding like animals in a fit of rage not human beings. The world is a tough ass place get used to it. Wake up and feel the task masters whip. If you don't think so stop paying your taxes and other bills and see how fast your out selling your booty to put food on the table or a roof over your head. Now after you've sold your booty to the fat old rich white guy to make it will you feel like a slave or will you rationalize your behavior as being smart resourceful??? Perspective is everything.

    This has been a public service message. Now go back to being out of control herd members. Reactionary slaves to external hormonal stimulation that you enjoy to much to stop drinking the kool aid.

    June 18, 2011 at 11:58 am | Reply
  82. paul

    If it's not happening in the U.S. we do not need to be involved. I'm so sick of the U.S. getting involved in other countries fights and problems, we have our own.

    June 25, 2011 at 10:12 am | Reply
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  83. catchme

    ,Human Traffickers,Sex SlaveryWork Slavery etc. is a problem that nobody can resolve it.even how much you try still is not going to STOP but make and effort to prevent to spread and become worse.those people are victim coz of financial difficulty knowing that it will help but become worse as they expected,educating them not to be a victim of those kind of slavery is not enough.Let The UNITED NATION enact a LAw to every country regarding slavery,not only CNN or Hollywood actress or actor will make an those countries a TIER 1 2 3 so they make an effort to prevent it is only a beginning but after it comply and recieved help from the US is back again not only that they are more organize and sophisticated and hightech.The US should enact a LAw that the word "RIGHTS"is cant beg a crooks to stop doing it or a Terrorist to stop blowing themselves in front of innocent people or beg them to snitch their Boss.if the US can make a Law without someone is reacting because of privacy and comply without malice then i guess they will hesitate to do it.but what can I say,everything needs to go public.some are so sensitive and conservative.everyone has the means they have the rights to become slave coz they have financial make the world go round let the UNITED NATION educated every country to make and effort to do prevent it and support it with fines and USE IT TO HELP THOSE VICTIMS AND THOSE COUNTRY WILL DO THERE PART so they can start implimenting there LAWS to prevent it.and those country that the US giving AID whatever the purpose or interest of the the US needs to have an ultimaum not just giving them TIER.also to cuts those spending and help AMERICAN PEOPLE stop NAGGING ABOUT THE ECONOMY..DONT BLAME THOSE IMMIGRANT WHO ONLY WANTS WORK SO THEY CAN HELP THEIR LOVEONES.thats is one problem why we have work slavery coz of will stop if there is a law that every people agree without prejudice then We can make our world go round..."""

    July 2, 2011 at 10:20 am | Reply

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    And in another development Widow warns christians society for being sleeping while muslims intend to topple regime for they are own sake, day after day things become worse and our Bishops are vigilants only in political things while our faith is haunted by anti chrst campaigners , and forgetting about assisting christians who are abused by muslims because only of their faith.

    The widow asked for christian community and EU AND US, together with Vatican to take a look to the situation, since it seem she fight with someone unpredictable, WAKE UP BISHOPS country is falling into evil hands.


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  138. renee hawthorne

    If only you knew about the slavery in our times . The ,'Voodoo ', slavery of our times . It can't be seen anyone can by it. you can't be seen by the victim . They can get any one to stop you from telling what is on you . you will be deemed as crazy, because yes its unseen. Your bruises look like a skin disorder. And your hair being cut off is stress. You can't get help because the people who are selling you sell you to all in your city. Yes this is the modern day slavery that you can't prove. I know I've tried. To report the ripping at my skin, the forcing on my personal parts. The entrapment of my life in to my home that I haven't pained on sense 2014. But yet I still live there. Reduced to live off of food stamps . Unable to work because they world get my employer to sell me and seen their friends there to herras me , while giving me unspeakable pain. to force me to quit. Telling to stay down. So I can stay their stay for money. And yet I can't prove it. While my organs stay in pain. My hair never grows. And my living is just that. I'm still alive. Dogs licking, men discharging and women forcing their fingers and nails . This is the modern day slavery.

    May 26, 2016 at 2:18 pm | Reply
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      Renee, I can describe the current system of slavery in simple terms and in a way that makes sense to 99.9% of the worlds population. In doing so you must keep in mind that I am describing it at a very high level which won't go into a deep level of detail. It is from this very basic yet brilliant system of slavery that so many like yourself come to find a mountain of toxic details that make up the story of what has happened during your life and what has come as a result.

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