Ty Faruki

A message in Urdu is written on an orange wall
An old man works away at sunset wearing a shalwar kameez
A factory kiln and its chimney emit smoke while 3 men work below it.

Brick Kiln slavery in Pakistan:

In Pakistan, the brick manufacturing industry thrives on unpaid labour using debt as a way to lure people to work for factory owners.

They provide loans in exchange for employment. But once they’re fully paid, factory owners keep them against their will and use their desperation to convince them that their labour has not yet matched the value of their loan, adding interest month by month.

Human Rights Watch has condemned the practice and says the problem of debt-bondage in Pakistan is one of the worst to be assessed.

Smoke billows out from 5 chimneys
A woman wearing traditional Pakistani clothing is making bricks in the foreground while a man walks in the background.
A man is standing in the sun next to a wall of bricks while his wheel barrow is on the opposite side in the shade.
A man stands while smoke rises in the background
A message in Urdu script is painted onto a brick wall
An older Pakistani man is walking
A silhouetted man walks against a backdrop of chimneys at sunset
Rows of bricks leading up to a background of stacked bricks
A boy is sitting on a pile of bricks and is laughing

Working conditions are violated by site owners:

Locations vary, from the outskirts of cities to rural parts of Pakistan. Though one thing each site has in common is the lack of protections for workers and the laborious conditions forced upon them.

Individuals working in brick kilns vary in age, though it is extremely common to witness anyone from as young as 2 years old all the way up to 80 years of age present at each site.

Bricks are made in many ways but usually by hand by younger workers under an intense heat which blazes throughout the year and worse in the southern regions such as Sindh province. As a consequence, site owners make workers toil throughout the night to avoid heat exhaustion, though this makes little difference during the summer season.

A man is sitting on a wheel barrow at sunset next to a dig site full of bricks to be made.
A chimney emitting smoke against a foreground of rows of bricks
A man is digging up soil in the sun against a background of trees and blue sky.
A man is shuffling coal from a skip
A young man stands in the doorway of a brick kiln cover in dust
A man is digging up materials. In the foreground is a row of bricks.
It is sunset and there is a silhouetted chimney in the background; in the foreground, there is a brick hut.
Three women are working outside against a background of goats and chimneys
A young boy shows his hands covered in soil and cement
A young girl is shovelling soil
A man is shovelling soil from a wheel barrow which is creating a plume of dust. A young boy is helping him.
Three men of different ages stand next to each other
A group of women make bricks in the foreground while three chimneys emit smoke at a brick-making site.
A pile of bricks can be seen in a chaotic manner.
A dig site to make bricks. In the background is a chimney and brick hut, while in the foreground, discarded bricks can be seen discarded.
A long main road in a desolate place