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March Banners_Step It Up_ENInternational Women’s Day 2016

The 2016 theme for International Women’s Day is “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality”. The United Nations observance on 8 March will reflect on how to accelerate the 2030 Agenda, building momentum for the effective implementation of the new Sustainable Development Goals. It will equally focus on new commitments under UN Women’s Step It Up initiative, and other existing commitments on gender equality, women’s empowerment and women’s human rights.

“On this International Women’s Day, I remain outraged by the denial of rights to women and girls – but I take heart from the people everywhere who act on the secure knowledge that women’s empowerment leads to society’s advancement. Let us devote solid funding, courageous advocacy and unbending political will to achieving gender equality around the world. There is no greater investment in our common future,”says UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in his message for International Women’s Day 2016.  Read more… 

Angela-Reed,-RSM-making-intervention-Sr Angela Reed rsm Speaks at the Special High Level Event at the UN

Sister of Mercy and member of ACRATH, Sr Angela Reed, is currently in residence at the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Global Action Office at the UN in New York. She recently made an oral intervention at the Special High Level Event at the UN entitled “In Stronger Partnership and Better Coordination to End Human Trafficking” on behalf of the Sisters of Mercy and the Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd.

Angela challenged policy makers to understand trafficking from a life course perspective, a multidisciplinary approach to looking at a person’s story alongside the world that person lives in, including the social, historical, economic and political environments. Challenging the dominant discourse on trafficking which is largely focused on criminality and migration, Angela called for a focus on prevention, whereby children’s rights to safe housing, adequate schooling, and health and wellbeing are realised across the life course. Read more…

Listen to the intervention. (video at 3:02:32 -3:05:07)

ObamaPresident Obama Signs New Law

President Obama has signed into law the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act. This law prohibits the import of goods produced by child and forced labour into the US. In the past if the demand for goods outstripped the domestic supply goods such as fish, electronics and chocolate could be imported irrespective of the presence of slavery in their supply chain. The US Department of Labour has been listing goods, classified by nation, that are likely to be made by forced labour.  This data will be crucial in assisting with the implementation of this law. (Photo: Huffington Post Australia) Read more…

Just ActEncourage the Government to Act

Human trafficking and forced labour occurs in industries in Australia such as construction, the meat industry, manufacturing, hospitality and people who are forced to live-in as house keepers. Goods imported from overseas can be tainted by forced labour, human trafficking and slavery. People coming to work in Australia from overseas expect that if they work hard they will get decent pay and conditions. Shamefully, this is not always true. A number of proposals to address human trafficking, both in Australia and in the production of imported goods, are under active consideration by the Minister for Justice, Michael Keenan.

ACRATH is supporting the campaign initiated by the Uniting Church Justice and International Mission asking the Minister for Justice to push his colleagues in Government to take action. Join the campaign here.


png-iomPapua New Guinea Police Sign MoU with IOM

In February 2016 the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen an already well-established cooperation between the two organizations in the field of migration management. The agreement will help the RPNGC and IOM work together more effectively in areas including counter-trafficking, human security, civil protection, internally displaced persons and peace building. IOM has been assisting the RPNGC for over six years in a wide array of activities, mainly focusing on counter-trafficking, including victim identification and referral, criminalization and prosecution of traffickers. Police Commissioner Baki commented, “This MOU is the first of its kind between RPNGC and IOM and it will give us an open mind to tackle challenges that confront us both. We will embrace the MoU and do everything possible to implement it.” (Photo: Read more…

Stop Trafficking!

Posted in February 27th, 2016

Stop TraffickingAnti-Human Trafficking Newsletter Vol 14 No 2

Articles in the February issue of Stop Trafficking highlight the expanding forms of sexual exploitation, especially pornography, and offers means for parents and professionals to safeguard potential or actual victims. Download a copy of the February issue here.

Forced Marriage from a Gender Perspective

Posted in February 25th, 2016

EU FM reportReport on Forced Marriage in the EU

Forced marriage from a gender perspective is a report giving an overview of the practice of forced marriage in the EU from a gender equality and women’s rights perspective. It analyses the definitions of forced marriage and puts forward a definition from a gender perspective. It also provides an overview of the relevant international/EU legislation, policies and deliberations, as well as national policies, civil law and criminal law (in the 12 Member State that criminalise forced marriage). For those Member States that criminalise forced marriage, the study provides an assessment of the effectiveness and possible consequences of the implementation of the criminal legislation, including an analysis of data and case-law. The study includes a specific chapter focusing on forced marriage within Roma communities and five case-studies specifically focusing on Denmark, Germany, Spain, Slovakia and the UK. The study also puts forward recommendations for improving the response to forced marriage at EU and Member State level. Download a copy of the report here.

Exploitation or Dignified Work?

Posted in February 25th, 2016

Pope Francis Meets With Workers and Employers in Mexico

Speaking to 3,000 workers and employers in the Mexican boarder town of Ciudad Juarez Pope Francis said “God will hold today’s slavers accountable, and we must do everything to make sure that these situations do not happen again. The flow of capital cannot determine the flow and the life of people…What kind of Mexico do you want to leave your children? Do you want to leave them the memory of exploitation, of insufficient pay, of workplace harassment? Or, should the future be one of “dignified work, a proper roof (over one’s head) and of land to be worked?” (Photo: Catholic News Service)  Read more…

Consumers Urged to Rethink Electronic Purchases

Posted in February 25th, 2016

2016 Ethical Electronics Guide

2016 Electronics GuideThe 2016 Electronics Industry Trends report released  by Baptist World Aid and Not For Sale shows the electronics industry has not made sufficient progress in implementing steps to protect workers.

“Forced labour, child labour and exploitation remain as significant problems in the supply chain of the electronics Industry. This is the most valuable industry in the world, worth in the trillions. If anyone can afford to ensure they have an ethical supply chain, it’s our big tech companies,” said Gershon Nimbalker, Advocacy Manager at Baptist World Aid Australia.

Now in its second year, the Electronics Industry Trends report graded 56 companies from A to F on the practices and policies they have in place to mitigate the risk of forced labour, child labour and exploitation.  This grading reflects the levels of visibility and transparency these companies have across their supply chain.  Read more…

Will Your Easter be #traffikfree

Posted in February 25th, 2016

Teaster2016_46he Good Egg Guide

In Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa, children are still trafficked and forced to harvest cocoa in order to supply our loved Easter eggs. Look for Fairtrade, Rainforest Alliance and UTZ  labeled products. The label tells us steps have been taken to prevent and disrupt this abuse.

Ethical Symbols

Want to know which eggs are #traffikfree in shopping centres near you? Download the Good Egg Guide to find out which ones are #traffikfree. Let us know if you find some that aren’t listed!

C 2011 ACRATH Inc – Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans