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It’s Human Trafficking Awareness Day. What Should You Do?
Here are three things you can do today to help fight modern-day slavery.
1. Get Smart. Read-up on the very latest developments in the global movement to end modern day slavery. FTS Co-founder Kevin Bales helps present a situation report on slavery’s global comeback in the December issue of the Atlantic. The article features the stunning photography of Lisa Kristine, who visited FTS projects in Nepal, India and Ghana to document the human face of slavery today. You can see Lisa talk about her experiences on TED. Also, today on the CNN Freedom Project webpage, there’s a great op-ed by David Abramowitz of the Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST), the coalition of leading U.S. anti-slavery groups that includes Free the Slaves. Sign up for the FTS blog RSS feed, so you’ll know when there’s important news, or friend us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter. Buy FTS books that will deepen your understanding of how slavery today can be ended.
2. Get Active: Contact your U.S. Senators and representative in the U.S. House, and ask that they support reauthorization of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). This law is the cornerstone of the federal government’s anti-slavery work. The 112th Congress ended last week without renewing this vital commitment to those trapped in modern slavery. We owe it to those victims – and to the many abolitionists who fought and died in the past to outlaw slavery in America – to keep up the fight. A bill to reauthorize the TVPA in the current 113th Congress will be introduced soon. But it’s never too early to let your elected representatives know that this is important. Background on the bill is here. Sign up for FTS newsletters and action alerts so you can stay in the loop.
3. Get Vocal. Share this blog post with your friends, family, coworkers and others. Bring up the subject of modern-day slavery on a coffee break, or at a dinner party, or while you watch the Golden Globes award show Sunday night and the movie Lincoln comes up. (Outlawing slavery didn’t end it. We must finish what Lincoln started.) Let people know that the Free the Slaves website is a valuable repository of facts, maps, history, research papers, films, interviews with slavery survivors, lesson plans for teachers, and more.
Lastly, if you haven’t already done so, please donate to Free the Slaves. Spreading the word that slavery still exists is vital, but so is the innovative community empowerment work that FTS does to help slaves break free and stay free.
If you aren’t able to take action today, no worries. The entire month of January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month (it began with the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, and it ends on February 1 with the 148th anniversary of the 13th Amendment — which enshrined abolition into the U.S. Constitution).
Thanks for taking initiative today – and beyond!