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Report of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences - Mission to Brazil

The Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences, Gulnara Shahinian, conducted an official mission to Brazil from 17 to 28 May 2010. She noted the positive and substantial role that ILO has played in working with all stakeholders in Brazil to combat slave labour. She calls on the international community to continue to support its work, and that of notable and experienced non-government organizations in Brazil.

Type: Report
Date issued: 30 August 2010
Authors: Gulnara Shahinian

The Special Rapporteur found that forced labour in the rural areas is most prevalent in the cattle ranching industry, followed by the agricultural industry. The victims are predominantly boys and men aged 15 years and older. In urban centres, forced labour is a feature of the garment industry. Such sectors are in need of urgent reform to prevent slavery-like practices, such as forced labour, from being used. In all these situations, the victims of forced labour work long hours, with little or no pay. They are threatened with or subjected to physical, psychological and sometimes sexual violence.

The Special Rapporteur commends Brazil for recognizing that forced labour exists in the country, and for the exemplary policies that the Government has put in place to combat contemporary forms of slavery in Brazil. These exemplary actions are, however, threatened by the impunity enjoyed by landowners, local and international companies and intermediaries, such as gatos.

Tags: forced labour, trafficking in persons

Regions and countries covered: Americas, Brazil

Unit responsible: Programme for the Promotion of the Declaration

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