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The Social and Political Foundations of Constitutions

Domestic labor[edit]

After countries began to formally abolish slavery, unemployment was rampant for blacks in South Africa and Nigeria pushing black women to work as domestic workers.[13][35] Currently, estimates from the International Labour Organization state that between 800,000 and 1.1 million domestic workers are in South Africa.[36] Many of these domestic servants become bonded to labor in a process similar to other industries in Asia.[35] The wages given to servants are often so poor that loans are taken when servants are in need of more money, making it impossible to escape.[35] The hours of working for domestic servants are unpredictable, and because many servants are women, their young children are often left under the care of older children or other family members.[13][35] Moreover, these women can work up to the age of 75 and their daughters are likely to be servants in the same households.[35]


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A 1994 report of Burmese prostitutes in Thailand reports compulsory indebtedness is common for girls in forced prostitution, especially those transported across the border. They are forced to work off their debt, often with 100 percent interest, and to pay for their room, food and other items. In addition to debt bondage, the women and girls face a wide range of abuses, including illegal confinement; forced laborrapephysical abuse; and more.[37]