Students Raising Awareness About Modern Day Slavery

IMG_4461 An estimated 27 million people are presently enslaved around the globe as a result of trafficking, debt bondage, illegal contract labour and prostitution – more than the total figure of all people trafficked during the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.

After learning about modern day slavery as part of their transition year program, students from Presentation College, Bray have painted a mural as a means of further raising awareness about the issue. The photograph shows the group of students in front of their mural.

Three students, Patryk Labuzek, Andrew Dore and Conor Davenport, collaborated in the writing of an article to provide more information to accompany the mural, in which they pointed out that slavery is big business (In fact it is the third largest criminal activity; globally earning an estimated 31.6 billion dollars annually) which is driven by the consumer’s desire for cheaper products and the desire of business for greater profits.

To some extent slavery still supports the first world lifestyle we enjoy, but the complex chain of production now associated with many common products lacks transparency which prevents consumers from being aware of the impact that purchasing these products has on human rights.

Whilst some forms of slavery need to addressed at their point of origin eg debt bondage in India, we can all take some steps to address the problem eg by purchasing fair trade products, by joining with others to urge our governments to treat irregular migrants who are trafficked for sexual or employment purposes as victims rather than criminals and to enforce severe penalties on those guilty of exploitation, and to work for a more just international order through the elimination of poverty and the provision of greater access to education, thereby reducing the chance of vulnerable people being lured into slavery.”

The full article can be read here.

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