Friday, October 30, 2009

Forced Labor

A new book recently arrived in the mail: Forced Labor, Coercion and Exploitation in the Private Economy, edited by Beate Andrees and Patrick Belser of the UN's International Labour Office. Here is the executive summary.

The terms "debt bondage" and "bonded labor" appear to be terms of art for involuntary servitude in various forms.

The book is mostly about the developing world, although there is a chapter on "Trafficking for Forced Labor in Europe," concerning migrant workers. The book has no chapter on the United States (where newspaper reports about involuntary servitude mostly seem to focus on illegal immigrants caught up in forms of indentured servitude, and sometimes deal with prostitution). I would be glad if that is because the 13th Amendment to the U.S. constitution is largely effective:

"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction."

No comments: