World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Agency Targets Forced Servitude in Latin America

UN Labour Agency Targets Forced Servitude in Latin America

New York, May 2 2006 7:00PM

With 1.3 million victims of forced work in Latin America, representing more than 10 per cent of the global total, the United Nations International Labour Organization (ILO) aims to drastically reduce such hash servitude over the next 10 years, according to a report it released today.

“We can achieve this goal if there is a strong will to resolve the problem,” ILO forced labour expert Roger Plant said at the start of the agency’s Regional Meeting for the Americas taking place from 2 to 5 May in Brasilia, Brazil, where the issue will top the agenda.

“Governments and the social partners in countries with forced labour have to become aware of the situation of those workers and take legal action, particularly against impunity of those who perpetuate forced labour,” he said.

The ILO report identifies a need for special programmes for the rural economy, national awareness-raising campaigns and stronger labour inspection systems. Countries like Bolivia, Guatemala, Paraguay and Peru with a strong indigenous population should be priority targets, the report says.

Although forced labour is endemic in Brazil, Mr. Plant said that the country has taken the lead in fighting the scourge.

Just last month, ILO said, police and Government officials freed 318 rural workers held in slave-like conditions in north-eastern Brazil, the poorest region of the country, and an another eight-day search, discovered 121 workers held without pay at three ranches in Maranhao state.

As a result, the ranch owners were required to pay each worker two monthly minimum salaries, or 700 reals (around $330), plus a fine of 100,000 reals ($46,420) or the equivalent in computers or cameras to the State. The audiovisual equipment is used by local authorities to check on ranches.

The Brazilian Ministry of Labour says that some 18,000 workers have been freed from slave-like living conditions since 1995, with many enrolled in government aid programs and returned to their native states.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: Is This Guy The World’s Most Dangerous Thirtysomething?

Saudi Arabia has long been regarded as a pillar of stability in the Middle East, and is the essential caterer to the West’s fossil fuel needs. It is also the country that gave us Osama Bin Laden, al Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks... More>>


Non-Binding Postal Vote: Australia Says Yes To Same Sex Marriage

Binoy Kampmark: Out of 150 federal seats, 133 registered affirmative totals in returning their response to the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”. More>>


Bonn Climate Change Conference: Protecting Health In Small Island States

The vision is that, by 2030, all Small Island Developing States will have health systems that are resilient to climate change and countries around the world will be reducing their carbon emissions both to protect the most vulnerable from climate risks and deliver large health benefits in carbon-emitting countries. More>>


Camp Shut Down: Refugees Must Be Rescued From Manus

On 31st October 2017, the detention centre on Manus Island in which the Australian Government has been holding more than 700 refugees was closed, leaving those living there in a desperate situation. More>>



Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>


  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC