Modern Slavery: Record Inclusions in Brazil’s Dirty List

The Brazilian Ministry of Labor and Employment (MTE) has released the latest update to the “Dirty List”. This list, officially known as the Cadastro de Empregadores, catalogs employers found guilty of subjecting workers to modern slavery. The recent update marks a significant milestone, with a staggering 248 employers being added, the highest number of inclusions ever recorded in the history of the list.

What Is the “Dirty List”?

The “Dirty List” is a compilation of employers who have been found guilty of subjecting workers to conditions analogous to slavery. It serves as a public record of their offenses. The list is maintained by the MTE and is governed by the Interministerial Ordinance MTPS/MMIRDH No. 4 of May 11, 2016. It has been in existence since 2003, with successive normative acts regulating its operation.

Employers are included in the registry only after the completion of an administrative process that confirms their violation of labor rights. The decision to include an employer is irrevocable and results from specific findings of slave-like working conditions. Once an employer is included in the “Dirty List,” their name remains public for a period of two years. In this update, 50 names have been removed from the list as they have completed their two-year publication period.

Transparency and Accountability

The purpose of the “Dirty List” is to bring transparency to administrative actions taken against employers who exploit workers. These actions are carried out by labor inspectors from the MTE, often in collaboration with other agencies such as the Federal Public Defender’s Office (DPU), the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office (MPF), and the Federal Highway Police (PRF).

Top Economic Sectors with Violations:

The current update includes employers from various economic sectors, with the following industries having the highest number of inclusions:

  • Domestic work (43 employers)
  • Coffee cultivation (27 employers)
  • Cattle farming (22 employers)
  • Charcoal production (16 employers)
  • Construction (12 employers)

The Fight Against Modern Slavery

The Ministry of Labor and Employment reaffirms its commitment to eradicating modern forms of slavery in Brazil, aligning with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 8.7, which aims to eliminate forced labor, modern slavery, and human trafficking by 2030. By exposing exploitative practices and holding employers accountable, the “Dirty List” serves as a powerful tool in the fight for workers’ rights and human dignity.