We Could End Slavery for the Value of Snap Chat
In a recent piece for The Guardian, slavery expert and University of Nottingham professor Kevin Bales placed the cost of ending slavery at £26.7 billion (about $46.3 bn)—equivalent to the current market value of Snapchat.
“If we are serious about slavery we will need to bring three key tools to the job: money, people, and knowledge,” Professor Bates writes.
“Money is the easiest to acquire, so long as governments keep the promises they made when they outlawed slavery.”
Caroline Kitto is the National Coordinator for Stop the Traffik Australia. She said that the amount of money that governments were investing was not yet adequate to resolve the problem of modern slavery.
“Unfortunately, in 2014 the world’s governments were spending about AUD$ 165m a year on anti-slavery,” Ms Kitto said.
“This is for a crime which conservatively brings in AUD$200bn a year in illegal profits.”
“Do the figures yourself—no wonder we are losing!”
The Australian government has committed to adopting a Modern Slavery Act, similar to one already adopted by the UK. Two parliamentary inquiries are currently working towards legislation, but the government has not placed a timeline on when they will introduce a bill.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said in August 2017 that this will take place “as soon as possible” but did not want to put a timeline on the work of the parliamentary committee.
“It is an intolerable fact that slavery exists in the 21st Century,” Ms Bishop said.
Professor Bales remains convinced that slavery can be abolished.
“It is time to start thinking bigger than…Snapchat,” he writes.
“The enslaved today make up the smallest fraction of the global population in history. The profits of slavery – about $150bn a year – are the smallest proportion of the global economy ever. In many ways slavery stands on the edge of its own extinction; we just have to give it a good hard shove.”
Jonathan Foye is Insights’ editor
For more on efforts to end modern slavery, visit Stop the Traffik’s website here
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