According to the 2017 Global Estimates of Modern Slavery published by Alliance 8.7, 40.3 million people were estimated to be victim of modern slavery in 2016. Modern slavery is not defined in law and it is used as an umbrella term to refer to ‘situations of exploitation that a person cannot refuse or leave because of threats, violence, coercion, deception, and/or abuse of power.’ This definition can encompass forced labour in the private economy (including child labour), state-imposed forced labour, forced marriage, forced sexual exploitation of adults and commercial sexual exploitation of children.

The Covid-19 pandemic and the resulting economic and labour market shock are having a huge impact on people’s lives and livelihoods. This is the worst global crisis since the Second World War and the ILO estimates that nearly half of global workforce is at risk. Workers in the informal sector have been the worst hard-hit, suffering ‘massive damage to their capacity to earn a living.’ These factors have increased people’s vulnerability to exploitation. Migrant workers, children and women are, particularly, at risk.

This Webinar will focus on the impact of Covid-19 on these vulnerable categories and will look at the role of the legal profession to address the heightened risks of modern slavery and child labour.

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