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Read the latest News in the fight against human trafficking

ACRATH Slide: Latest News

Strengthening Criminal Justice in East Asia

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Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced a new program to reduce human trafficking in East Asia by strengthening criminal justice systems in the region.  The Prime Minister announced the $50 million Australia–Asia Program to Combat Trafficking in Persons (AAPTIP) program at the East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh.

The five-year program will reduce opportunities for human trafficking by strengthening the capacities of Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam to investigate and successfully convict traffickers.  Men, women and children in East Asia are vulnerable to traffickers for many reasons including poverty, lack of employment opportunities, inadequate or unenforced labour laws and regulations, poor education or gender inequality.

Find out more…

End Cotton Crimes

Posted in November 22nd, 2012

Take Action Against Forced Labour in Uzbekistan

Photo by Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights
Banner design by ILRF

Every year the government of Uzbekistan forcibly mobilizes over a million children, teachers, public servants and private sector employees for the manual planting and harvesting of cotton. The Uzbek government enforces the order with threats and violence; detains and tortures Uzbek activists seeking to monitor the harvest; and continues to refuse to allow international monitors to observe the cotton harvest.

Although H&M has pledged to stop sourcing cotton from Uzbekistan, the fashion giant refuses to put safeguards in place to completely ban companies from its supply chain that profit from Uzbek cotton.

Please take action and tell H&M to ban companies from its supply chain that profit from slavery.

ACRATH Responds to Inquiry

Posted in November 12th, 2012

Inquiry into Slavery, Slavery-like Conditions and People Trafficking

The Human Rights Subcommittee of the Joint Standing Committee on foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade recently called for submissions into an Inquiry into Slavery, Slavery-like Conditions and People Trafficking.  ACRATH responded to this inquiry with a submission that acknowledged the work that has been done by the Australian Government but also raised issues that are still in need of further reform such as service provisions and the visa framework for trafficked people.

Click here to read the ACRATH submission.

Stop Trafficking!

Posted in November 12th, 2012

Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter Vol 10 No 11

The latest issue of Stop Trafficking reports on ACRATH’s visit to Federal Parliament this year, the challenges at the US – Mexican boarders and also offers a few educational resources that may be helpful in the fight against human trafficking.

Download your copy of Stop Trafficking here.

Sex-Trafficking in the Hotel Industry

Posted in November 3rd, 2012

LCWR Resolution to Action

Author: Kimberly Ritter, Senior Account Manager/Trafficking Initiative Coordinator at Nix Conference & Meeting Management

Four and a half years ago, the Federation of the Sisters of St. Joseph came to Nix Conference & Meeting Management to research the hotel site for their conference. They asked about the hotel’s policy on human trafficking. We were not aware at the time that hotels were the venue for this crime. Together with the sisters, we worked to generate conversation with the Millennium Hotel St. Louis to sign the ECPAT-USA (End Child Prostitution and Trafficking) Code of Conduct. Nix has also worked with ECPAT to develop a Meeting Planners Code of Conduct to combat commercial sexual exploitation of children. As a socially responsible company, Nix utilizes our professional resources in the travel and tourism industry to create awareness of domestic minor sex trafficking of children.

Healing Action Network was founded in 2011 to provide a psychosocial support network for trafficking survivors, organize public awareness, train hotel staffs, and work with policy-makers and law enforcement to create person-centered policies that serve survivors and punish perpetrators. The founder of the network survived a horrifying experience as a victim of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking. She brings this intimate familiarity with the subject matter, as well as educational and professional expertise to her work with survivors and the community. Click here for more information.

(Thank you to LCWR for permission to reprint this article.)

Victim Translation Assistance

Posted in November 3rd, 2012

Life Support Messages for Victims of Human Trafficking

Law enforcement officials and victim service providers are often the first point of contact for victims of human trafficking who do not speak the language of the country they are in. In order to aid those helping the victims, UN.GIFT/UNODC, the Austrian Criminal Intelligence Service and the Austrian NGO LEFOE-IBF worked together to create VITA (Victim Translation Assistance).

VITA is a unique new tool using audio messages, that allows law enforcement officials to provide a level of basic assistance to victims of human trafficking. Human trafficking survivors contributed to the development of these messages, which were also supported by experts in human trafficking focused on victims’ needs.

For more information click here.

Political Commitment Key to Tackling Trafficking

Posted in October 31st, 2012

Dr Anne Gallagher Speaks at Taiwan Workshop

Speaking at a one-day workshop, organized by Taiwan’s National Immigration Agency, to discuss forced labor issues and their efforts in cracking down on human trafficking, Dr Anne Gallagher commented that “political commitment, instead of massive resources, is the key to improving labor exploitation and human trafficking conditions.”  A leading global expert on the international law of human trafficking Dr Anne Gallagher was awarded the Order of Australia earlier this year.  In June  US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton recognised Anne as one of 10 Trafficking in Persons Heroes.  Read more…

Obama throws the spotlight on Human Trafficking

Posted in October 31st, 2012

“Human Trafficking a Debasement of Our Common Humanity”

Mario Tama AFP/Getty Images

Speaking at the Clinton Global Initiative President Obama commented that human trafficking is a global problem which requires us to take collective responsibility and make combating it an absolute priority. ” It ought to concern every community, because it tears at our social fabric.  It ought to concern every business, because it distorts markets.  It ought to concern every nation, because it endangers public health and fuels violence and organized crime.  I’m talking about the injustice, the outrage, of human trafficking, which must be called by its true name — modern slavery.”

For a video presentation or transcript of President Obama’s speech click here.

Chocolate Company Commitments

Posted in October 25th, 2012

Chocolate Scorecard

Chocolate companies are making a number of efforts to address the issues of forced labour, trafficked labour and exploited child labour in the production of cocoa in West Africa. Over 70% of the world’s cocoa is grown in West Africa.  A scorecard detailing chocolate companies’ efforts to address child and forced labour in cocoa production has been produced by the Uniting Church across Australia as part of a campaign called “JustAct”.

Is your favourite chocolate free of cocoa produced by child slavery?

Click here to read the Chocolate Scorecard.

California Transparency in Supply Chains Act

Posted in October 25th, 2012

Compliance is Not Enough

The California in Transparency in Supply Chain Act signed into law in 2010 became effective as from 1st January 2012.  This Act requires business to disclose information about their efforts to eradicate slavery and human trafficking from their direct supply chains where they make tangible goods for sale.

It is also hoped that the measures required by this Act will give consumers the information they requite to make informed choices and so purchase goods from companies that responsibly manage their supply chains.  The impact on efforts to eradicate human trafficking and child slavery.

Click here for more information.

(C) 2011 ACRATH Inc - Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans