March 31, 2015
An Associated Press investigation reveals that men from Burma are being held against their will and forced to work long hours in Southeast Asia’s fishing industry. According to a March 27 NPR article, AP reporters talked to dozens of Burmese slaves on the Indonesian island of Benjina, where they found men being held in cages. In some cases, the men were lured into the fishing industry by brokers who promised to help them find jobs. Once “hired,” they are required not only to pay the brokers but to pay for their food and shelter. As a result, their debt becomes “bottomless” as they work 22-hour days. The AP said that some of the food caught by the workers may be ending up in US grocery stores, restaurants and even in cat food.
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