ILO Factsheet Measuring the costs of coercion
Jul 01 2010
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What are, in addition to the human suffering, the financial costs of coercion to people who work in forced labour? In other words, how much money is "stolen" from people in forced labour? Answering this question requires some estimate of the net opportunity cost of being in forced labour, i.e. the amount of income that is lost because a person is in forced labour instead of being free. In a general sense, the cost of coercion can be defined as the difference between a victim's actual income in forced labour and what he or she would have earned doing the same job in a free labour relationship. Research over the last few years has shown that the loss of income associated with coercion can be traced to two main sources. The first source is the underpayment of wages. The second source of lost income that we consider arises mainly in cases of human trafficking: it is the financial costs associated with the recruitment process. More information about human trafficking on the website of ILO.