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ACRATH Calendar 2016

Posted in November 30th, 2015

calendar 2016Anti-Trafficking Resource Calendar

National and international efforts to combat human trafficking and forced labour in Australia are showcased in ACRATH’s 2016 calendar produced by long time ACRATH (Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans) member Sr Janine Bliss fmm. The calendar illustrates the range of projects and people collaborating to combat the problem, described by Pope Frances as ‘a crime against humanity’.

The calendar was first produced in 2015 and was used by organisations, NGO’s and Church and school communities around the country as a referral point and to gain an understanding of the issues. This year’s calendar was designed to show the extent of advocacy, policy reform, funding initiatives and practical support being given to people trafficked in Australia. As well, the calendar touches on global links and how NGOs worldwide are working together.

The calendar includes comprehensive campaign and program information from the following people and organisations:

  • ACRATH (Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans)
  • Anti-Slavery Australia
  • Attorney-General’s Department
  • Baptist World Aid Australia
  • Franciscans International
  • Irin – Humanitarian News and Analysis
  • National Farmers’ Federation
  • Red Cross Australia
  • Salvation Army – Trafficking & Slavery Safe House
  • Salvation Army – The Freedom Partnership
  • Shalom College, Bundaberg
  • Stop the Traffik
  • Sr Angela Reed RSM, PhD and social worker Mrs Marietta Latonio

“It is helpful to those of us working in this space, to get a sense of who else is doing what. The calendar does that and it also illustrates how many groups are working together and not just working in silos. It’s a great example of justice organisations finding common ground and joining forces for a better outcome for the people they aim to serve,” Sr Janine said.

The RAP“For many of us who work against human trafficking, it is difficult to get a full picture of what is going on in Australia amongst the government and NGOs. I have tried to explore that and the calendar is a useful vehicle to use in raising awareness of human trafficking issues.”

This year’s calendar features 15 projects or profiles, including Government, school, church, NGO and ACRATH initiatives. As well, it alerts people to some important anti-trafficking days of the year such as February 8 – the Feast of St Josephine Bakhita, the World Day of Prayer, Reflection and Action Against Human Trafficking and March 25 International Day of Remembrance for Victims of Slavery and Transatlantic Slave Trade.

Sr Janine, ACRATH Queensland Coordinator, said the calendar was also a call to action, urging people to join one of the many campaigns highlighted. She said in her talks she encouraged people to:

  • Join a campaign to fight trafficking in your community
  • Fight trafficking by buying from companies that have transparent and slave-free supply chains
  • Raise awareness of human trafficking issues
  • Talk to your friends and family about the issue
  • Volunteer for, or donate to ACRATH, or other organisations fighting trafficking.

“The groups featured in the 2016 calendar are working together in the belief that we can make things better, but we need more people to join the fight, doing what they can in their own families, community or workplace,” Sr Janine said.

The calendars cost $10. Download an order form here.

Contact: For more information contact Sr Janine Bliss at or on 0412 185 026

white ribbon day 2White Ribbon Day 2015

Women’s activists have marked 25 November as a day against violence since 1981. This date came from the brutal assassination in 1960, of the three Mirabal sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic, on orders of Dominican ruler Rafael Trujillo (1930-1961). In 1999 the United Nations called on all governments, organisations and NGOs to organize activities to raise awareness of the problem and declared 25th November as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. This day is also referrred to as White Ribbon Day.

In her statement to mark the 2015 International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, reflects “Imagine how different the world would be for girls growing up now if we could prevent early marriage, female genital mutilation, the turning of a blind eye to domestic violence, abusive text messages, the impunity of rapists, the enslavement of women in conflict areas, the killing of women human rights defenders, or the hostility of police stations or courtrooms to women’s testimony of violence experienced.” Download the full statement.

On this White Ribbon Day will you Stand Up and Speak Out against violence against women and children. Visit the White Ribbon Australia website.

ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons

Posted in November 24th, 2015

ASEAN Trafficking Convention27th ASEAN Summit

On Sunday 22nd November 2015 member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed the ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Person.  In signing this document they recognised that trafficking in persons is a violation of human rights and reaffirmed their commitment to strong regional and international co-operation against trafficking in persons and recognised “the importance of having in place a regional instrument against trafficking in person that is legally binding and would assist ASEAN Member States as countries of origin, transit and destination to deal with their diverse national challenges, policies and strategies in the fight against human trafficking.” Read the full document here.

Stop Trafficking!

Posted in November 23rd, 2015

Stop TraffickingAnti-Human Trafficking Newsletter Vol 13 No 11

The latest issue of Stop Trafficking! looks at the people who may be rubbing shoulders with us daily but for whom exploitation, fear and coercion may be their daily fare. Articles include In Plain Sight, But Hidden Exploitation,  Labour Trafficking and Temporary Work Visas and Business Sustainability begins with Fair Hiring just to mention a few. Read more…

Sustainable Development Goals

Posted in November 23rd, 2015

Sustainable Development Goals 2015-2030Post Millennium Development Goals

At a United Nations summit in September 2015 the post-2015 development agenda know as the Sustainable Development Goals were adopted. These goals build on the work accomplished through the Millennium Development Goals and take this action further.

The 17 Goals and 169 targets will stimulate action over the next fifteen years in areas of critical importance for humanity and the planet. The following statements that relate specifically to human trafficking and modern day slavery are included within the agenda:

5.2 – Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation

8.7 – Take immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour, end modern slavery and human trafficking and secure the prohibition and elimination of the worst forms of child labour, including recruitment and use of child soldiers, and by 2025 end child labour in all its forms. Read more… 

Pope Denounces Exploitation of Migrant Workers

Posted in November 12th, 2015

Speaking During Visit to Prato

During a visit to Prato, an Italian town near Florence which attracts Chinese workers for the textile industry, Pope Francis chose to speak about the exploitation of migrant workers and the sweatshop conditions many of them have to work in.  It was in Prato in December 2013 that  seven Chinese workers, five men and two women, were burnt to death in an unregulated factory after working a sixteen hour shift. Pope Francis said this event was “a tragedy of exploitation and inhumane living conditions.”

Thank you Nestlé

Posted in November 11th, 2015

MiloMilo & KitKat are Certified Traffikfree

Nestlé, are playing their part. We were excited when ?Nestlé certified its chocolate products in Australia and New Zealand to prevent the use of human trafficking, forced and child labour in 2013. And now they have taken another exciting step! Milo and the global KitKat range will now also be certified. This is a massive milestone for Nestlé, and one that shows how powerful we as consumers can be!
ACRATH joins with members of STOP THE TRAFFIK in thanking Nestlé. You too can send a message of thanks by posting this image on Social Media, and tagging @NestléAUNZ.

Susan Coppedge Appointed Ambassador-at-Large

Posted in November 11th, 2015

susan coppedgeAmbassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons

President Obama has appointed Susan Coppedge as the Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. In this role she will lead the United State’s global engagement against human trafficking. The State Department’s Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons assesses global trends, provides strategic foreign assistance funding and engages foreign governments, civil society, other federal agencies and key stakeholders in the fight against modern slavery.

Ambassador Coppedge previously served as Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Georgia. During her time there she prosecuted more than 45 human traffickers in federal cases involving transnational and domestic sex trafficking of adults and children, and labor trafficking. These prosecutions brought perpetrators to justice and assisted more than 90 victims of trafficking. Ambassador Coppedge carries with her the stories of these survivors, many of whom thought the system would never stand up for them. She has also worked closely with nongovernmental organizations in conducting community outreach and providing vital services for victims. (Photo:

Freedom Award for Sr Maree Marsh csb

Posted in November 8th, 2015

DSC00586Anti-Slavery Australia Freedom Awards 2015

Congratulations to ACRATH member Sr Maree Marsh csb who has been awarded a 2015 Anti-Slavery Australia Freedom Award. The Anti-Slavery Freedom Awards recognise  the outstanding work and contributions of individuals and organisations for initiatives against slavery and slavery-like practices including forced labour, forced marriage and human trafficking .Maree’s award acknowledged the work that she does supporting men, women and children who have been trafficked into Australia through her work as a psychologist at Anti-Slavery Australia. One person assisted by Maree commented that through Maree’s support “I have come to realise how capable I am and what I can achieve.”  Maree has had a long association with ACRATH and was the National Chairperson 2012-2014.

ACRATH would also like to congratulate the other 2015 Anti-Slavery Australia Freedom Award recipients:

  • Alison Aggarwal from the Australian Human Rights Commission
  • Baptist World Aid: Behind the Barcode campaign – Australian Fashion Report 2015
  • Alan John Morrison, Journalist

ACRATH Member at UNANIMA International

Posted in November 3rd, 2015

Susan NewlandBeginning Internship at UNANIMA

Having recently begun her experience as an intern at UNANIMA International ACRATH member, Susan Newland, was asked to introduce herself in the UNANIMA International Newsletter. She wrote:

“‘In matters of truth and justice, there is no difference between large and small problems, for issues concerning the treatment of people are all the same.’ (This comment written by Albert Einstein in an undelivered speech in 1955 is something I believe in.)  My name is Susan Newland. I am an Australian citizen from Adelaide in South Australia. Presently I work for Catholic Education South Australia (CESA) and am a member of ACRATH (Australian Catholic Religious Against the Trafficking of Humans). I hold a Doctorate in Education, a Master’s degree in International Law & International Relations, a Master’s degree in Theological Studies and a number of other qualifications that reveal my love of learning and my need to understand the issues that affect us deeply as human beings in a fragile world. My aim is to work for the “matters of truth and justice” to which Einstein refers. I am privileged to have been sponsored by the Brigidine Sisters in Australia for an internship with UNANIMA. I have already observed some of the concerns that make up the tapestry of needs calling for debate and advocacy within the United Nations. And it is within this promise of hope that the UN represents, that I wish to stand alongside those whose voices are calling to be heard and bring their story to the UNANIMA community and all who will listen.”

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