END_IT_logo_reverseYesterday we talked about a slavery to religion, objects and idols and today we want to address another form of slavery that is oppressing millions worldwide. 27 million people still live in slavery today whether in bonded labor, forced labor, or in human trafficking. It’s an industry making $32 billion dollars a year – the act of selling another human being. The CNN Freedom Project defines slavery as:

Slavery occurs when one person completely controls another person, using violence or the threat of violence to maintain that control, exploits them economically, pays them nothing and they cannot walk away.

Today, February 27, people worldwide are shining a light on slavery. There are more slaves now than ever before in history. Think this is a problem elsewhere? Think again: 14,500 to 17,500 people are trafficked in the United States annually. It’s also a major problem in Haiti.

Over 250,000 children in Haiti are Restaveks, a modern day form of child slavery that persists throughout Haiti. An estimated 30% of Haitian households have a restavek child. Many of these children are between 5 and 15 years old, with 20% being younger than 12.

Restavek is Creole for “one who stays with.” Typically, children born into rural poverty are sent by their families to live with people, often times extended family, in urban areas, lured through false promises of education, food, and jobs. Once there, they are forced to work long hours with no pay, are often times kept out of school, and are physically and socially separated from the rest of the family. Many times, if these children do not perform, they are beaten, cast into the street, or killed.

Over 2/3 of restaveks are girls. These girls are extremely vulnerable to the sexual abuses of their male captors. In fact, some restavek girls are called la pou sa, or “there for that” referring to the sexual abuse and rape these girls are subject to.

Sadly, many families willingly send their children into restavek situations. With large families and little opportunity for economic sustainability, the idea of one less mouth to feed pushes parents to send their children away. Parents see this as a means for social mobility for their children, believing they will be given a chance to become educated and succeed in life. (information taken from cpr-3.com/stopdoingwrong)

Today, you can shine a light on slavery. Join the End it Movement and be “in it to end it.” Get more information, social media uploads, posters, and more at enditmovement.com. Will you put a red X on your hand today and share with somebody about the 27 million people trapped in slavery?

Find out how CPR-3 is fighting to set restaveks free in Haiti through the #StopdoingWrong campaign and join us in shining a light on slavery. We can set captives free in Haiti and we’d love for you to join the Movement in this way.

Find out more information about the modern day slave trade in these slaveryfacts.