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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Modern Slavery News Round-Up

Nestlé advances child labor battle plan
After the chocolate producer's cocao supply chain was found with numerous child labor violations, Nestlé has allowed the Fair Labor Association to perform a study in order to start eradicating child labor within its production cycle.  The investigation has uncovered numerous grievances including 72 injuries due to machetes and unpaid workers.  Jose Lopez, the vice-president of operations, has promised that they desire to make an impact. "We will work with the World Cocoa Foundation and be in schools, we will work with International Cocoa Initiative and gather the cooperatives and put people there ... to give training on the farmers."  Nestlé can now be held accountable for sustainable changes that can help bring about code-compliant cocoa.

Thailand remains major center for trafficking
According to their ministry of Social Development and Human Security, Thailand is still a soucre, transit and destination of modern slavery.  Provinces in the north are starting points for domestic trades, but victims also arrive from Laos, Myanmar and China.  One district, Songkhla Sadao, hosts 120 sex-offering establishments alone.  According to many sources, the victims are entered into the trade at the age of 11 to 15.  The anti-human trafficking unit rescued 36 underage girls from Myanmar last year alone.  Human trafficking has also come to include boys and men who are forced to work on fishing trawlers.

Gov't drive against trafficking obtains budgetary support
The Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT)announced on the first that its proposed $100 million for 2013, which is double the current budget.  IACAT head and Justice Undersecretary Jose Vicente B. Salazar says the budget is consistent with the recommendations made by the newly released Global Annual Trafficking in Persons Report.  The funding will mainly go to address key issues such as advocacy, rehabilitation, prosecution and partnership.  Although the plan has yet to be finalized, the next step is to send the proposal through to Congress after is resumes on July 23rd.

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