According to the inaugural Global Slavery Index Report, released by the Walk Free Foundation, India has the highest number of enslaved people (estimated at nearly 14 million), followed by China (2.9 million). This highlights the importance of our work to free and equip Indian and Chinese women to build better lives and transform their communities.
Modern slavery (according to the report) includes “slavery, slavery-like practices (such as debt bondage, forced marriage and sale or exploitation of children), human trafficking and forced labor, and other practices.” While the global estimate of the total number of enslaved people was previously at 27 million, the inclusion of forced marriage into the definition of slavery has increased the number to nearly 30 million.
India “exhibits the full spectrum of different forms of modern slavery, from severe forms of inter-generational bonded labor across various industries to the worst forms of child labor, commercial sexual exploitation, and forced and servile marriage.”
There are a high number of Indian citizens enslaved within India itself. The majority of enslaved people in India are enslaved in their own villages and “many are trapped in debt bondage to a local landowner or born into slavery because of caste, customary, social and hereditary obligations.” There are also high numbers of foreign women and girls from other countries, particularly Nepal and Bangladesh, who are trafficked into India for commercial and sexual exploitation.
She Is Safe works with Christian co-workers in India to rescue women and girls from slavery and provide economic opportunities to help them grow. We rescue girls as young as three from brothels, providing them a safe home, education, and nurture. Through She Is Safe Transformation Groups of 10-12, women learn of God’s love, develop job skills, administer a savings and lending pool, and support each other to succeed in businesses.
Read more about our work in India and support a project that helps women and girls!
Download the Global Slavery Index Report.