Debt vs. Debt-Bondage: What’s the Difference?

Photo purchased from iStock at Getty Images

Photo purchased from iStock at Getty Images

Debt burdens millions of Americans every day at one level or another. Whether it’s debt from a credit card, a student loan, a mortgage, or a bank loan, many of us borrow money for purchases we can’t immediately pay for. But what happens when you borrow beyond what you would be able to repay? Generally speaking, the average American has options to pay off a debt.

Now consider what debt might mean for victims of human trafficking. For them, debt is often an insidious means of control used to keep them trapped. Traffickers convince victims that they have no other choice but to work for the trafficker and pay back exorbitant amounts of debt. Oftentimes, victims will also get hit with unreasonable interest rates, sometimes as high as 400%. Controlling another person through debt may sound less extreme than physical force, confinement, or violence, but debt bondage is a financial shackle that is just as debilitating, fraudulent, and coercive.

To read more: http://polarisproject.org/blog/2016/03/01/debt-vs-debt-bondage-what%E2%80%99s-difference