Understanding The US Ban On Importing Forced Labor Goods

Law360, New York (April 17, 2017, 5:15 PM EDT) -- Claire Reade

Samuel Witten Since 1930, the U.S. government has prohibited the import into the United States of goods "mined, produced, or manufactured wholly or in part" by convict, forced or indentured labor.[1]

The sweep of this prohibition is potentially very broad. Approximately 21 million people around the world are currently subjected to forced labor, including millions of children.[2]

Enforcement of this prohibition was relatively rare until February 2016, when Congress, on a bipartisan basis, repealed the so-called "consumptive demand" exception to the import ban. That exception had allowed goods into the United States, despite their production by forced labor, if...

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