News from Australia
Here is the news from Australia
District 9810, Victoria produces a District ‘End Slavery’ Newsletter which is circulated to all Clubs. It’s edited by RAGAS Coordinator, Tony Stokes. Tony pulls relevant articles from RACSnews and adds material from other sources to keep Rotarians informed and engaged. Click on an Issue number to read, share or download.
|1||August 2015||Introduction to the Newsletter and the topic of child slavery and exploitation as well as an introduction to the Rotarian Action Group against Child Slavery. The headline item is the World Summit to End Human Trafficking that was hosted by Past US President Jimmy Carter and RAGAS Board member Dave McCleary, with RI President Ravi Ravindran as a keynote speaker.|
|2||November 2015||Features a report on the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which includes a declaration “to eradicate forced labour and human trafficking and end child labour in all its forms”.|
|3||February 2016||Focuses on the Australian scene with the launch of the Australian Freedom Network by Walk Free founder Andrew Forrest and endorsement by Australia’s Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull. It also includes recent articles from the Australian Press which have highlighted possible unethical practices within the supply chains of some major retailers.|
|4||May 2016||Introduces opportunities for Clubs to support five new projects in Rotary year 2016 : View the Newsletter for further details and weblinks|
| Sept 2016
|Tony Stokes introduces a new, more dynamic Newsletter format using MailChimp. There are updates on smaller, affordable project opportunities for Clubs; Welcome to new RAGAS members in Victoria; A BBC article entitled “A Modern day slave in Australia’s suburbs. If you are outside Australia and wish to donate to any one of these $AUD projects you can do so via PayPal, using either the Australian $ (AUD) donate button on the RAGAS Donate page or this direct link https://goo.gl/TvFyYk
There is also a very disturbing video report (7.30 mins) on cyber sex trafficking in the Philippines from ABC News ‘Australian cyber sex trafficking ‘most dark and evil crime we are seeing‘. It features the work done by the International Justice Mission (IJM) to track down and prosecute the perpetrators. NB RAGAS member Irene Garcia, President of RC Metro Manila and her Club are working with international partnering Club RC Grants Pass and RAGAS Coordinator Caleb Laplant to produce a Global grant to challenge this crime in Manila, supported by IJM.
| Dec 2016
|A landmark edition. Supported by short videos, it helps us understand the importance of developing effective supply chain management to root out and eliminate slave labour engaged in the goods and services we buy. It also puts a focus on cybersex trafficking of children in the Philippines, inviting your support for a RAGAS supported global grant project being jointly developed between RC Grants Pass (USA) and RC Metro Manila (Philippines). Editor Tony Stokes, also features 5 other potential projects, in India, Myanmar, and Zambia for Clubs to support.|
|Editor Tony Stokes explains how to Rotarians can engage and inform debate with the Australian Government as it sets out to inquire into whether it should adopt national legislation to combat modern slavery. Working with Stop the Traffik the edition is supporting a campaign to make it a “Traffik Free Easter” by selecting only brands of chocolate that are ethically produced. View this hard hitting documentary – The Dark side of Chocolate. Better still Share it on your own Facebook page. Help fight cyber sex trafficking in the Philippines through A Rotary Foundation Global Grant (to be featured at RAGAS’s Business meeting in Atlanta; Support Child Rights in Myanmar, and / or support the “Save the Girl child” project|
|Released to coincide with the UN World Day Against Human Trafficking (30 July) it includes this link to the latest Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP). This edition is packed with useful links. You can read RAGAS Members (Australia) submission to the Australian Parliamentary Inquiry on Modern Slavery (Item 21) here. Watch the Rotary International Trafficking Panel session at Rotary Convention in Atlanta. There is an excellent short video from Freedom United (Was Walkfree) on forms of slavery. There are links to four Club project opportunities being organised in Nepal, India, Northern Thailand and Cambodia. There are opportunities to join one of more of three exploratory fields trips organised by Stop the Traffic. India Fashion Field Trip in November 2017, an India Field trip in January 2018 and a further field trip to Thailand/Cambodia in Jan/Feb 2018. Australian Members meet our good friend Matt Friedman (Mekong Business Club) on his recent visit to Melbourne, hosted by Stop the Traffik. View his video ‘Where were You”
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Walk Free Foundation have jointly updated, extended and published the latest estimate of the World’s enslaved people. Known as the 2017 Global Estimate of Modern Slavery, it suggests there are some 40 million people enslaved. “The 2017 Global Estimates of Modern Slavery are presented as a contribution to the (UN’s) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular to Target 8.7 which calls for effective measures to end forced labour, modern slavery and human trafficking as well as child labour in all its forms”.
Also in this Edition ‘End Slavery’ promotes the annual ping-pong-a-thon which raises funds for six worthy anti-slavery charities.
It also promotes public interest in the Australian Parliamentary Inquiry into Modern Slavery Act which drew evidence from leading RAGAS Members Malcolm Baird, Tony Stokes and Dr. Gillian Booth. See their RAGAS Submission No 21, which is acknowledged in the Committee’s final report, Hidden in Plain Sight: An inquiry into establishing a Modern Slavery Act in Australia published on 7th December 2017.
Sungai Kolok, Southern Thailand, Global Grant seeking funding partners. Hidden in Plain Sight, just released, a Parliamentary Inquiry into establishing a Modern Slavery Act in Australia, and ethical Christmas shopping guides.