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World Developments and Civics,

Yet, surprisingly, the outrage that one would expect to exist in the face of such a horrific violation of fundamental rights is not present. Global outrage is focused almost exclusively on 20% of the 12.3 million – on the 2.45 people who the ILO estimates are trafficked into forced labor, debt bondage and perhaps slavery2 (ILO 2005, 14). The horrors endured by the other 80% – who were not trafficked – are rarely mentioned in public debates or political discourse and, surprisingly, not even in discussions about trafficking despite the fact that trafficking always involves some form of forced labor, debt bondage and/or slavery. The costs of these abuses to the 12.3 million victims are extensive and shocking. As well as being forced to work, victims will have restrictions placed on their freedom of movement, may be beaten, killed, denied access to health care, fed a starvation diet, deprived of an education and/or forced to live in filthy and dangerous conditions. Many also face the possibility of sexual assault. They often suffer from diseases that could have been prevented with adequate nutrition, sleep and access to health care. For some victims, the suffering amounts to inhuman and degrading treatment and torture. In sum, victims are deprived of all of their basic human rights and freedoms for days, weeks, or years – until they are freed or die.