Modern Australian

Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how

  • Written by Jennifer Burn, Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Technology Sydney

We might not want to believe it, but human trafficking and slavery happens in Australia. Slavery is not an historical artefact, but a tragic reality for millions of people around the world, including in Australia.

Recently, the term “modern slavery” has been used to contrast contemporary forms of slavery from historical slavery such as that seen during the transatlantic slave trade.

In practice, modern slavery is an umbrella term that is often used to describe human trafficking, slavery and slavery-like practices such as servitude, forced labour and forced marriage.

But slavery is timeless. It has always been about the commodification of the body of a man, woman or child, the theft of liberty and sometimes life.

Read more: Modern Slavery Bill a step in the right direction – now businesses must comply

Anti-Slavery Australia, at the University of Technology Sydney, started researching and assisting trafficked and enslaved people in Australia back in 2002. For over 17 years, Anti-Slavery Australia has provided access to legal advice and assistance to hundreds of people who have experienced modern slavery.

In 2018 alone, Anti-Slavery Australia helped over 123 people who had been trafficked to or from Australia, or had faced slavery-like conditions while in Australia, including forced marriage, servitude and forced labour.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg. A recent report by the Australian Institute of Criminology estimates that only one in five victims are detected. This means that the cases we see are likely to be a small proportion of the scale of trafficking and slavery in Australia.

Read more: At last, Australia has a Modern Slavery Act. Here's what you'll need to know

Vulnerable people of any background or status can be cruelly exploited. Some groups, such as migrant workers or young people, are more vulnerable than others.

So what does modern slavery look like in Australia?

Here are four real world examples, with names of individuals and businesses changed, to explain the different kinds of exploitation seen at Anti-Slavery Australia and considered in Australian courts.

Slavery/domestic servitude

In Australian law, slavery is defined as

the condition of a person over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised, including where such a condition results from a debt or contract made by the person.

Essentially, slavery is when a person is controlled as if they were mere property.

Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Eventually, with the help of one of Mr and Mrs K’s family members, Mary was able to leave this situation. This example is based on a case that ultimately led to Mr and Mrs K being found guilty of slavery offences and sentenced to eight and four years’ imprisonment respectively. Servitude Servitude is when a person does not consider themselves to be free to stop working or leave their workplace, because of threats, coercion or deception; and the person is significantly deprived of their personal freedom in their life outside of work. Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Eventually, Tom managed to escape from the house, flagged down a motorist and contacted police. Police responded and found 49 other exploited people who had been coerced and controlled. This example is based on a case that led to two people being found guilty of causing a person to enter into or remain in servitude and sentenced to three years’ and two-and-a-half years’ imprisonment. Forced labour Forced labour is when a person does not consider themselves free to stop working, or to leave their workplace, because of threats, coercion or deception. Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Eventually, John was able to get help, but he was in very poor health and died a few years later. Forced marriage A forced marriage is when a person is married without freely and fully consenting because of either coercion, threat or deception. It could also be because they’re incapable of understanding the nature and effect of a marriage ceremony, possibly because of their age or mental capacity. A forced marriage is different from an arranged marriage or a sham marriage. The main difference is that there is consent in arranged and sham marriages. Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND Human trafficking and slavery still happen in Australia. This comic explains how Wes Mountain/The Conversation, CC BY-ND To find out more about the scenarios you have read, additional information and confidential legal advice contact Anti-Slavery Australia. See www.antislavery.org.au. For information and advice on forced marriage see www.mybluesky.org.au. ​

Authors: Jennifer Burn, Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Technology Sydney

Read more http://theconversation.com/human-trafficking-and-slavery-still-happen-in-australia-this-comic-explains-how-112294

NEWS

VIDEO: Michelle Grattan on the family law inquiry

University of Canberra Deputy Vice-Chancellor Leigh Sullivan discusses Scott Morrison’s new family law inquiry with Michelle Grattan. They also speak of the developments in the Tamil family from Biloela’s case...

why don't we have electric aircraft?

CC BY-NDClimate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change.If you have a question you’d like...

how ancient virtues can guide our responses to the climate crisis

What would Socrates say about coal mining? Or recycling? www.shutterstock.comAs world chiefs and youth leaders gather in New York at the United Nations Climate Action Summit, many of us...

A shot of hope in the face of climate despair

Sunrise at Beachmere, Queensland.Mark Wasser/FlickrHope, like a slinky, springs eternal. While rage, fear and disgust are all appropriate responses to the realities of climate change (which we have explored extensively...

It's safest to avoid e-cigarettes altogether – unless vaping is helping you quit smoking

The recent vaping-related deaths in the US have brought the issue into the spotlight around the world.From shutterstock.comHealth authorities in the United States are investigating 530 cases of lung illness...

What is the charge of concealment of birth and why is it still happening in Australia?

There has been a long history of women being charged with, and prosecuted for, concealment of birth both within WA and the rest of Australia.ShutterstockIn August, a 24-year-old woman appeared...

We want to learn about climate change from weather presenters, not politicians

Melbourne's ABC weather presenter Paul Higgins discussing a trend towards warmer April days.ABC/MCCCRHOne of the great paradoxes of climate change communication in Australia is that politicians command the most attention...

Ignoring young people's climate change fears is a recipe for anxiety

This story is part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 250 news outlets to strengthen coverage of the climate story.Thousands of school students across Australia are...

Another stolen generation looms unless Indigenous women fleeing violence can find safe housing

In Western Australia more than half the children placed in state care are Aboriginal. The state government committed this month to reducing this over-representation, in a move that parallels the...

on the ending of a friendship

ShutterstockFriendship is an incomparable, immeasurable boon to me, and a source of life — not metaphorically but literally. -Simone WeilAbout eight years ago, I went to dinner with a...

putting government money where policy needs to go

Governments can choose to spend money in ways that support climate change policy, including a shift to electric vehicle fleets.from www.shutterstock.com, CC BY-NDThis story is part of Covering Climate Now...

Why do men have nipples?

Men have nipples because of a quirk in how embryos develop. But that's only part of the story of this seemingly redundant body part.from www.shutterstock.comWomen’s nipples have long been a...

Popular articles from Modern Australian

Strictly For Women:5 Steps To Top 5 Designer Sunglasses That Celebrities Are WearingBest Paradise Islands You Should Visit in AustraliaMost Popular Mexican Destinations for Australian Visitors How to know the universe is guiding you Cancer 101: 6 Dietary Habits Increasing Cancer RiskQuick turnaround in a rental property at Bondi demands frequent rubbish removal4 Basic Decor Principles That Never Go Out Of StyleEvery Day Should Be Mother’s DayGuys, Are You Making These 5 Critical Skincare Mistakes?What To Check For In Supplements And Slimming Aids?Engineered Wood Flooring vs. Laminate Wood Flooring How Panel Beating Can Quickly Repair Your Car’s Hail DamageBenefits of filtered waterCleaning tips for the kitchen