In the globalized economy, around 21 million people are victims of child labour, forced labour and work in slavery like conditions. Thousands of goods and services bought and sold every day are touched by modern-day slaves, in particular girls and young women who are not only the most vulnerable to being exploited, but also comprise of the most invisible labour in global supply chains. Worldwide, there are 152 million children who are a part of the workforce for production of some 136 goods from 74 countries— spanning across all major industries and many parts of corporate operations such as agriculture, cosmetics, readymade garments, textiles, diamond, cocoa and cotton to name a few . Young women and children, in particular migrants and inhabitants of conflict ridden regions are the most vulnerable to being trafficked, sold and forced to work in the leading commercial sectors of the world.
Addressing these impacts of rapid globalisation, its processes and the complexity of global supply chains on the most vulnerable and marginalised sections of the world, is a key challenge in building peaceful and strong societies and also one of the most crucial targets envisioned by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). In working towards these development goals of eliminating and preventing all forms of child labour, slavery and trafficking, the Global March Against Child Labour (Global March) works to address key issues related to human trafficking, forced labour and child labour within global supply chains, among other things.
Global March believes that we need to act collectively to protect the rights of millions of children, girls and young women and address their vulnerability created by poverty, inequality and discrimination, which is the biggest threat to achieving sustainable gender equality.