This map shows where the world’s 30 million slaves live. There are 60,000 in the U.S.
Wow. This was a little shocking. Especially the parts about the US.
Check it out:
The United States, per capita, has a very low rate of slavery: just 0.02 percent, or one in every 5,000 people. But that adds up to a lot: an estimated 60,000 slaves, right here in America.
If your goal is to have as few slaves as possible — Walk Free says it is working to eradicate the practice in one generation’s time — then this map is very important, because it shows you which countries have the most slaves and thus which governments can do the most to reduce the global number of slaves. In that sense, the United States could stand to do a lot.
You don’t have to go far to see slavery in America. Here in Washington, D.C., you can sometimes spot them on certain streets, late at night. Not all sex workers or “prostitutes” are slaves, of course; plenty have chosen the work voluntarily and can leave it freely. But, as the 2007 documentary “Very Young Girls” demonstrated, many are coerced into participating at a young age and gradually shifted into a life that very much resembles slavery.
A less visible but still prevalent form of slavery in America involves illegal migrant laborers who are lured with the promise of work and then manipulated into forced servitude, living without wages or freedom of movement, under constant threat of being turned over to the police should they let up in their work. Walk Free cites “a highly developed criminal economy that preys on economic migrants, trafficking and enslaving them.” That economy stretches from the migrants’ home countries right to the United States.