Forced Labour

Forced Labour in Kenya, Forced Labour and Employers in Kenya, Forced Labour and the Law and Labour Laws in Kenya and more on AfricaPay Kenya.

What is forced labour?

Under Employment Act, 2007, forced or compulsory labour is any work or service that a person does under threat of any penalty, or work that a person does involuntarily. A threat in this case includes the loss of one’s rights or privileges.

Is there prohibition against forced labour?

Under section 4 of Employment Act, 2007, no person shall use or assist any other person in recruiting, trafficking or using forced labour. The law defines forced or compulsory labour by excluding the work or service that should not be included as forced labour. These types of works include: 

  • Work in the military. However, forced or compulsory recruitment of children for use in armed conflict is deemed to be forced labour
  • Work or service which forms part of the normal civic obligations of the citizens of Kenya 
  • Work or service carried out as a result of a conviction in a court of law, provided that the work or service is carried out under the supervision and control of a public authority and that the person is not hired out to or placed at the disposal of private persons, companies or associations
  • Cases of emergency where a person works in the event of war or disaster or threat of calamity in any circumstance that would endanger the existence or the well-being of the whole or part of the population
  • Minor communal services performed by the members of the community in the direct interest of the said community provided the members of the community or their representatives are consulted.

What happens if one contravenes this law?

A person who contravenes the provisions of this section commits an offence and shall, on conviction be liable to a fine not exceeding KES 500, 000 or to not more than a two-year jail term or to both.

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