A new global report on slavery has estimated there are more than 40 million people trapped in slavery worldwide. Many of us will have rarely thought about the immense scale of modern-day slavery, assuming that slavery only exists in faraway lands. But that assumption is wrong.
Have you ever had your nails done at a salon? Do you have your car hand-washed? Have you ever had building work done, or had a new driveway laid? If so, the chances are you may have come across someone who is enslaved. The harsh reality is that modern slavery not only exists in the UK, but it is on the rise. It is all around us – in nail bars, car washes, hotels, restaurants, farms and building sites. I myself was ignorant about modern-day slavery until I came across an online article a few years ago, and I have been researching it ever since.
The actual report being referred to lists some 1,700 Vietnamese over 7 years. It’s very hazy indeed about the difference between slavery (vile) and illegal immigration with labour paying back the fee (perhaps not desirable but also not vile).
This may all be entirely appalling even so of course but it’s not exactly immense scale, is it?