A First Step Toward Stopping the Import of Goods Made With Forced and Child Labor

The Senate voted last week to close a loophole in the Tariff Act of 1930, a law that prohibits goods made by forced, child or prison labor from entering the United States unless the United States doesn’t produce enough of those goods to meet consumer demand. This ‘consumptive demand’ exemption was eliminated as part of a larger trade enforcement bill expected to be signed by President Obama.

No one likes to think that the soccer ball their child plays with, the rug in their living room, or the shirts hanging in their closet might have been made with forced or child labor – but until now, there’s been little to prevent that from happening. Closing this loophole is the first step to stopping goods tainted by exploitation from entering our country, our stores, and our homes. Now, it’s up to our government to enforce the Tariff Act, and to adopt and enforce other measures that hold businesses accountable for ensuring that their supply chains are free of forced and child labor.

Read our press release on this issue here.

Learn more about this accomplishment and the implementation challenges that must be overcome here.


The Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST) is a U.S. based coalition that advocates for solutions to prevent and end all forms of human trafficking and modern slavery around the world.

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