Last month I did a brief story reporting the findings of a new Global Slavery Index, which ranks 162 countries by estimating the number of people in each nation affected by modern slavery practices including human trafficking, forced and bonded labour, forced and child marriages and the use of children in the military.
Essentially the ranking system was compiled first by looking at existing data sets from NGOs, official bodies including the UN, the US State Department and the International Labour Organization, and media reports. Where data is missing or insufficient, as is often the case, the researchers did some statistical guesswork and projected estimates.
According to the index, published by a new charity called the Walk Free Foundation, Mauritania, Haiti and Pakistan rank among the countries with the highest prevalence of modern slavery. In terms of proportion of the population affected Mauritania was the worst, with many people inheriting slave status from their ancestors. But in absolute terms, India, China and Pakistan topped the list.
My report is available here, and if you’re interested in reading more about the report and its findings you can read many more details, infographics and the entire original report on the Walk Free Foundation website.