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Two Thirds of all human trafficking in the world is labor trafficking, mostly in the 3rd world. However the developed countries are the ones purchasing the products which creates the demand. This crime is about money. If the money stops for slave made products, the world would be forced to only supply products where people are paid a "living wage" Fair Trade means no child or slave labor was used in the manufacturing or distribution of that product. Since slavery is illegal in countries like the U.S. , Canada, Europe, etc. making sure the products you buy is mostly is referring to imported products from China, India, Indonesia, San Salvador, etc. You can find a complete list of products that use slave labor by going to the Department of Labor website, www.dol.gov and search for "list of goods produced by child or slave labor." There is a great phone app entitled "Slavery Footprint" that you can download that lets you know how many slaves support your current lifestyle with what you purchase.
We can start our own personal campaign to end child and slave labor in the 3rd world by making sure our coffee, tea, sugar and chocolate are "Fair Trade." The world consumes almost 6 billion cups of coffee and tea a day. If it was all Fair Trade it would transform living conditions in the world for many of the poor and would dramatically reduce labor trafficking. It would also help the economies of the developing world as companies in the developing world can not compete with companies that do not pay their workers. We wrote the book "15 Minute Healthy Organic Meals for Less Than $10 a Day" so people had a resource with which to share with their friends the importance of using Fair Trade. What people have shared with our team is that while it may have been difficult to get their friends to read a book on "Human Trafficking" because it is a "dark" subject, many of their friends are into health and loved getting the "food" book as a gift because it is a great book to build one's health while stressing the importance of considering how our food is produced and using our "buying power" to influence a decrease in labor trafficking and taking care of our environment.
Another significant factor that is contributing to Human Trafficking in the 3rd World is corruption. The International Justice mission is doing a fabulous job of addressing corruption. One of their initiatives reduced the availability of minors for sex trafficking by 79 percent in Cebu and IJM has experienced similar successes in Cambodia. Any fundraising that one can do to support this organization will go a long way to reduce slave labor in the 3rd World.
In many places in the 3rd World, it is getting too hot to grow food so the Human Traffickers will purchase the oldest child, sometimes as young as 7 years old, so the rest of the family can eat for a year. Then that child will be locked in a brothel for the rest of their short life. What this means is that taking action to prevent Climate Change is also impacting Human Trafficking as well as every other social issue as climate change is making the poor, poorer which makes them vulnerable to becoming exploited in many ways. One significant way we can reduce green house gases is to use anything re-usable as the production of any product needs utilizes green house gases in order to produce it. In the U.S. city by city is passing ordinances to reduce the use of plastic shopping bags as we have an island of plastic in the ocean that is twice the size of Texas and a "plastic soup" made up of tiny pieces of plastic in the Pacific Ocean that is twice the size of the United States. In order to comply with the ordinance, people are purchasing re-usable bags with the store's logo on it. A church group can create their own bags like the one below. with the logo of your place of worship with the words "Save Children from Human Trafficking by Purchasing Fair Trade Products." Then every time people shop, they would remember to buy "Fair Trade" and they would be advocates for buying Fair Trade every place they carried the bags. Attached are several flyers for Fair Trade that I have at my table. Bar Code. Fair Trade. Slavery Foot Print. I put them in sign stands and invite people to take a picture as people often throw away flyers and do save their pictures. This flyer will help raise awareness regarding saving energy which reduces global warming. Let's all do our part to reduce the suffering of so many in the 3rd world!
We start by raising awareness at our faith communities. You can find materials for a "Freedom Sunday" or a "Freedom Salat" for Muslim communities, etc. simpley by googling "Freedom Sunday" that you can use to raise awareness regarding Human Trafficking and the importance of purchasing Fair Trade products... From there we go to the city and establish "Fair Trade Towns" meaning the merchants are committed to not carrying any products produced by slaves. This website has information on how to set that up. www.fairtradetowns.org. If we put enough pressure on companies to only use "Fair Trade" organizations for their supply chains, we would save millions of people from a life of misery.
Since 2015, Starbucks now only has "Ethically Sourced" coffee because of the number of people who wrote to them. They promise to have their tea and cocoa ethically sources by 2020. Apple used slaves for their electronic projects until 2012, when they joined the Fair Labor Association. Social pressure like the social media campaign to the left is what had them change. There are many organizations like "Slave Free Seas" that are working to raise awareness of slave labor at sea. The fishermen are held in chains and work 20 hours a day. Please take the time to go to different websites or social media pages and re-post at your social media page to do your part to raise awareness.