Narratives of commercial gestational surrogacy (CGS) as ‘baby-selling’ often conflate or interchange the transfer of children born via surrogacy with trafficking in children or the sale of children, two sometimes overlapping but nonetheless distinct offenses. Moreover, anti-trafficking laws have been used to police cross border CGS. But when do CGS arrangements fall within the category of legitimate ‘reproductive tourism’ and when do they amount to child trafficking? In this paper I critically explore intersections between human trafficking laws and CGS, vis-à-vis the child, charting the relevant trafficking laws in the context of international surrogacy, and analysing whether trafficking laws are an appropriate mechanism through which to regulate CGS. I conclude that while child trafficking might occur via surrogacy, CGS in itself is not child trafficking under international law.

Commercial Gestational Surrogacy: Unravelling the threads between reproductive tourism and child trafficking DOWNLOAD














Final Evaluation: Forced Labor Indicators Project

In April 2021, the Government of Ghana (GOG) launched its Ten-Year Action Plan on the Eradication of Child Labor, Forced Labor, Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery in Africa (2020-2030): African Union Agenda 2063 – Sustainable Development Goal (S...Read More

The COVID-19 Pandemic and Workers in Cambodia: A Survey of Suspended Workers in Four Sectors: Garment Manufacturing, Footwear and Travel Foods, Hotels and Guesthouses, and Other Tourism Services
COVID-19 resourcesGuidance

In Cambodia, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in widespread job suspensions and losses, and substantial reductions of income for workers and their families. By June 2020, as many as 234 factories in the manufacturing sectors (garment, footwear and...Read More

Respecting Human Rights – Organisational Capacity Assessment Instrument (OCAI)

This Organisational Capacity Assessment Instrument (OCAI) is intended to help you assess and improve your company’s management capacity to manage its human rights impacts. The OCAI consists of a self-assessment questionnaire with 22 questions cent...Read More

In Harm’s Way: How Systems Fail Human Trafficking Survivors

The National Survivor Survey is the largest and most significant effort to date to learn directly from survivors of sex and labor trafficking. This report uses the findings from this study to paint a detailed picture of the arc of trafficking – fr...Read More