World Day for Slavery Abolition

When is World Day for Slavery Abolition?

World Day for Slavery Abolition is observed every December 2nd to promote awareness and action against slavery worldwide. Better known as the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery, this is a United Nations holiday that is noted around the globe.

Worldwide Slavery Facts

In the United States, slavery that stemmed from the infamous transatlantic trade was officially abolished during the Civil War. However, forced labor isn’t the only type of slavery, nor is it just a problem in a few countries. Slavery is a worldwide problem that comes in numerous forms, including human trafficking, forced prostitution, body organ trades and forced marriages. . All of these types of slavery occur worldwide, even in developed and “free” countries.

Among the worst types of slavery are those that involve children. Child sex trades are a horrific worldwide problem, as well as armies who force children to fight in wars. Nearly half of all slaves are children.

History of the Holiday

World Day for Slavery Abolition was first established in 1985. The United Nations chose December 2nd because it was the same date that the General Assembly adopted a resolution for the “Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others” back in 1949. Throughout the rest of the 1980s and early 1990s, the holiday was known as World Day for Slavery Abolition. In the late 1990s, the United Nations chose to refer to the day as the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery.

Awareness and Action

At its core, the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery is a human rights holiday. The United Nations takes the opportunity to raise awareness of slavery and all of its forms every December 2nd in an effort to promote action against these human rights violations. Every year the Secretary-General makes a speech about the importance of slavery abolition as well as the significance of global efforts to stop it.

World Day for Slavery Abolition is a different type of holiday in that it isn’t celebrated in the traditional sense. Instead, the holiday is more of an opportunity to raise awareness and promote action. Individual countries take home messages from the United Nations about the world slave trade, as well as solutions to help stop it. Public schools often teach special lessons to students about the history of slavery. Non-profit groups help call attention to the problems of modern-day slavery. More importantly, much work is done to help the public identify possible victims and perpetrators of the slave trade to help stop it in its tracks.




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