Around 29 million women and girls are victims of modern slavery which includes practices like forced labour and forced marriage, revealed a report.
According to the report titled 'Stacked Odds', one in every 130 women and girls is forced to live in modern slavery today and are subjected to debt bondage and domestic servitude.
"The reality is that there are more people living in slavery today than any other time in human history," said Grace Forrest, co-founder of the Walk Free anti-slavery organisation. She was addressing the issue at a United Nations (UN) news conference, reported Wion.
Forrest stated that the global estimates were studied and reported by Walk Free and two UN agencies - the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
The report highlighted that 99 percent of the victims of forced sexual exploitation are women. Additionally, 84 percent of all victims of forced marriage and 58 percent of all victims of forced labour are also women.
The organisation defined modern slavery as planned and systematic removal of a person's freedom, where one person is exploited by another for either personal or financial gain.
"What this report has shown is that gender stacks the odds against girls from conception throughout their lives," she said.
Forrest further added that the face of modern slavery "has radically changed." "We're seeing normalised exploitation in our economy in transnational supply chains and also in migration pathways," she said.
Speaking on the on-going coronavirus situation, she said that the world's most vulnerable people have been pushed further into the practices of modern slavery due to the pandemic.
She mentioned that the pandemic had led to a sharp increase in forced and child marriage and exploited work conditions around the world. Adding, the Walk Free and UN's Every Woman Every Child program are launching a global campaign to demand action to eliminate these practices of slavery.
The campaign would work towards putting an end to child and forced marriage, which 136 countries have yet to criminalise.
"We know that women and girls are experiencing unprecedented levels of exploitation and forced labour in supply chains of the goods we buy and use every day — clothing, coffee, technology," Forest said.
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