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Read the latest News in the fight against human trafficking

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Government Bans Foreign Flagged Fishing Vessels in NZ Waters

At the Prevent People Trafficking Conference held in Auckland, New Zealand, 11-12 April Dr Anne Gallagher praised the New Zealand Government’s effort to curb slavery at sea.  In 2012 the Government announced that foreign-flagged fishing vessels would no longer be able to legally operate in New Zealand waters after a four-year transition period.  Foreign vessels would then be required to meet New Zealand standards and requirements.

The Prevent People Trafficking Conference also addressed issues such as forced and underage marriage, migrant sex workers and ways to end the human trafficking practices.

Texting Assists Human Trafficking Victims

Posted in April 13th, 2013

“BeFree” Text Gives Instant Access to National Human Trafficking Resource Center

Polaris Project and Thorn: Digital Defenders of Children have announced that victims and concerned citizens in the US can now send text messages to “BeFree” and instantly connect with the National Human Trafficking Resource Center.  Because victims are usually closely monitored being able to send a silent message can often be the difference between on-going slavery and freedom.  Read more here.

MDG Momentum

Posted in April 7th, 2013

1,000 Days of Action

April 5 marked 1,000 days to the 2015 target date for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).  The United Nations reports that the “MDGs are the most successful global anti-poverty push in history. Governments, international organizations and civil society groups around the world have helped to cut in half the world’s extreme poverty rate. More girls are in school. Fewer children are dying.”

In the remaining 1,000 days there is a call to accelerate the push to reduce poverty, increase access to education and work towards gender equality.  These measures will also reduce vulnerability to human trafficking.

Solwodi Newsletter

Posted in April 7th, 2013

Solwodi Newsletter No 95, March 2013

The March 2013 issue of Solwodi (Solidarity with Women in Distress) carries an article entitled “Border less operation for women in distress.”  It tells of the pastoral care extended to women on the streets by Solwodi as they keep a watchful eye for women who have been trafficked.  The issue also has the report of an interview with Monika Hartenfels, the new Executive Director of Solwodi.

Download a copy of the latest Solwodi Newsletter here.

Woman Convicted of Holding Sex Slaves

Posted in April 7th, 2013

Six Women Held in Sexual Servitude

In a recent court case in Sydney the jury heard how a woman had forced six immigrant women into sexual servitude.  After being recruited in Malaysia and brought to Australia on student visas the six women were forced to work in a brothel in Sydney.  With little or no English they were told they had to work until they had repaid the $5,000 expenses incurred in bringing them to Australia. This conviction, along with the recent passing of new Australian legislation on Slavery, Slavery -like Conditions and People Trafficking send a clear message that slavery and human trafficking are not acceptable in Australia.  More information about the case can be found here.

Pope Francis Speaks about Human Trafficking

Posted in April 1st, 2013

Easter Message from Pope Francis

In his Urbi et Orbi Message, Easter, 2013, Pope Francis commented that “the power of Christ’s Resurrection, this passover from slavery to evil to the freedom of goodness, must be accomplished in every age.”  

He went on to encourage all people to work for and pray for peace.  “Peace in the whole world, still divided by greed looking for easy gain, wounded by the selfishness which threatens human life and the family, selfishness that continues in human trafficking, the most extensive form of slavery in this twenty-first century.”

Social Responsibility in Thai Food Industry

The Thai Food Processors’ Association (TFPA) has publicly come out in support of Andy Hall and the research he did, countering the Natural Fruit company that is seeking to have Andy imprisoned and fined up to $10 million. The statement reiterates the TPFAs commitment to oppose child labour, forced labour and human trafficking.

In a statement released on 29th March 2013 TFPA indicated its members welcome independent researches, including the recent report by Finnwatch, which may report on weaknesses in the social responsibility programs of the food industry in Thailand. This will assist TFPA and its members to coherently implement further action plans in order to comply with social compliance requirements of importing countries and to uphold greater social standards.

View a copy of the TFPA statement here.

Plans Not Dreams

Posted in March 30th, 2013

When Will All Cadbury Products Use Certified Cocoa?

In 2012 Kraft Foods Australia and New Zealand announced they would invest $400 million in making cocoa sustainable.  What does this mean in practice?  When will Toblerone and other Cadbury products be using cocoa certified free of trafficking and child labour?  Join the campaign to ask Kraft Foods for real plans showing real commitment to ending child trafficking in the cocoa industry.

To order postcards click here.  Alternatively you might like to a send comment via the Cadbury website or write to Cadbury at  Reply Paid 200, Ringwood, Victoria 3134 asking them to extend their range of Fair Trade chocolate products.

Advocacy Visit to the Australian Parliament

Posted in March 25th, 2013

ACRATH Raises Concerns with Members of Parliament

From 19-22nd March four ACRATH members took their concerns regarding the rights of those who have been trafficked into Australia to members of the Australian Parliament and departmental officers.

During this time they were also able to attend a public hearing on the Slavery, Slavery-like Conditions and People Trafficking Inquiry conducted by the Human Rights Subcommittee of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade during which the Australian Federal Police gave evidence.

It was good to find that the work of ACRATH was once again respected and affirmed. This affirmation was across parties and indicates the work of fighting human trafficking has bipartisan support.

Read more…

Stop Trafficking!

Posted in March 25th, 2013

Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter Vol 11 No 3

This issue of Stop Trafficking looks at how the demand for commercial sex increases the trafficking of women and children and opens the door to globalized crime rings.

Download your copy of the March issue here.

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