#Charleston Shooting Reignites Debate About Confederate Flag

#AceNewsReport#CHARLESTON June.19: On Thursday, hours after a white gunman killed nine people in a black church in Charleston, S.C., a Confederate flag continued to fly over the grounds of the state’s Capitol. 

The Supreme Court ruled the same day that Texas did not violate the First Amendment by refusing to allow the flag on its license plates. […]

https://thesecularjurist.wordpress.com/2015/06/19/charleston-shooting-reignites-debate-about-confederate-flag/

@AceNewsServices 

#charleston-massacre, #confederate-flag, #jon-stewart, #overt-racism, #republicans, #right-wing-extremism, #slavery, #south-carolina, #white-supremacy

‘ THIRTY FIVE MILLION PEOPLE WORLDWIDE TRAPPED IN MODERN FORM OF SLAVERY ‘

#AceNewsServices – Nov.18 – More than 35 million people around the world are trapped in a modern form of slavery, the Guardian said, citing a report from the Walk Free Foundation (WFF).

The study by the Australia-based NGO that publishes the annual global slavery index, highlighted the prevalence of forced labour, human trafficking, forced marriages, debt bondage and commercial sexual exploitation.

Due to better data and improved methodology, WFF said it had increased its estimate by 23 percent in the past year.

Source: Download PDF:Here:  

#ANS2014 

#bondage, #commercial-sexual-exploitation, #debt-bondage, #forced-labour, #forced-marriage, #human-trafficking, #ngo, #slavery

THAILAND: ‘ British Anti-Slavery Campaigner’s Trial Starts ‘

#AceNewsServices(Editors Choice) THAILAND (Bankok)- September 22 – Andy Hall is a British campaigner with a special focus on the rights of migrant workers.

' Free Andy Hall '

‘ Free Andy Hall ‘ Download this PDF Link

Two years ago, on behalf of Finnwatch, he undertook an investigation into Natural Fruit, part of NatGroup, a Thai company that processes pineapples and supplies retailers around the world. Finnwatch’s final report paints a picture suggesting modern slavery:

“…passports and work permits confiscated; compulsory and excessive overtime; fines and unclear deductions from wages; debt bondage and violence by guards and superiors.”

Instead of focusing on addressing these serious allegations, Natural Fruit decided to try and silence Andy with lawsuits. They have pursued civil and criminal charges and now Andy could face a prison sentence and $10 million in legal damages for his investigations.
Are you as outraged? Now is your chance to join the call for justice.

Stand with Andy Hall: demand that Natural Fruit drop all charges against him and thoroughly investigate and take action to ensure there is no modern slavery or exploitation in their business.

Now is a crucial time in Andy’s prosecution. Andy’s trial has just started. Although Natural Fruit’s behaviour is deeply disturbing it proves that the company cares about its public image.

By coming together over the next few days, with activists all around the world that are standing in solidarity with Andy, we can show Natural Fruit’s senior management what we think about these excessive and intimidating charges.

If this case proceeds and Natural Fruit are successful this would not only be a grave miscarriage of justice for Andy. This process could set a dangerous precedent for other companies in Thailand that might take a similar approach when allegations are raised of modern slavery in their supply chains.

This threatens the work of anti-slavery campaigners but also workers in Thailand who might be too afraid to come forward and report abuse.

Please join the growing global outcry over his prosecution and fight for the rights of anti-slavery campaigners and their efforts to end worker exploitation.

Demand justice for Andy and workers vulnerable to exploitation and modern slavery in Thailand now.

In solidarity,

The Walk Free Team

#ANS2014PDF Download link to Campaign  

http://finnwatch.org/images/

#bankok, #british, #finnwatch, #migrant-workers, #natgroup, #natural-fruit, #slavery, #thai, #thailand

North Virginia: ” GOP Congressional Candidate Senator {Dick} Black Says Spousal Rape Not a Crime”

#AceWorldNews says after taking a drubbing in last year’s state elections, Virginia Republicans are debating whether their party has come to be defined by its extremists. But in a congressional district in Northern Virginia, one of the state’s main instigators of culture warfare, state Sen. Richard H. “Dick” Black, is running in the Republican primary to replace long-time GOP moderate Rep. Frank Wolf, who is retiring. And he’s guaranteed to ignite wedge-issue passion. Exhibit A:

As a state legislator, Black opposed making spousal rape a crime, citing the impossibility of convicting a husband accused of raping his wife “when they’re living together, sleeping in the same bed, she’s in a nightie, and so forth.”

Black has referred to emergency contraception, which does not cause abortions, as “baby pesticide.” Black also fought to block a statue of Abraham Lincoln at a former Confederate site in Richmond. He wasn’t sure, he explained at the time, that statues of Lincoln belonged in Virginia. He has argued that abortion is a worse evil than slavery. And once, to demonstrate why libraries should block pornography on their computers, Black invited a TV reporter to film him using a library terminal to watch violent rape porn.

Read More at:http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/01/gop-congressional-candidate-richard-dick-black-spousal-rape-not-a-crime

#abraham-lincoln, #cultural, #evil, #north-virginia, #pornography, #republicans, #slavery, #state-legislator

#AceWorldNews says “We Need a Concerted Action to Eradicate Modern Day Forms of Slavery”

Am I not a man emblem used during the campaign...

Am I not a man emblem used during the campaign to abolish slavery. The image is from a book from 1788, so there can be no effective copyright. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to the  “Top United Nations officials marking the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery ” yesterday with a call for concerted action to eradicate the contemporary forms of this heinous practice.

“It is vital that we give special consideration to ending modern-day slavery and servitude which affects the poorest, most socially excluded groups – including migrants, women, discriminated ethnic groups, minorities and indigenous people’s,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon <“http://www.un.org/sg/statements/index.asp“>said in his message for the Day, observed annually on 2 December.

The International Day marks the date in 1949 of the adoption by the General Assembly of the UN Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others. The focus of the day is on eradicating contemporary forms of slavery, such as trafficking in persons, sexual exploitation, the worst forms of child labour, forced marriage and the forced recruitment of children for use in armed conflict.

Today, 21 million women, men and children are trapped in slavery all over the world, according to the UN International Labour Organization (ILO), which has teamed up with prominent artists, athletes and advocates in its campaign to “End Slavery Now.”

Mr. Ban noted that there has been important progress in the last year, including stronger legislation and greater coordination by a number of countries to combat slavery. Also, more and more businesses are working to ensure their activities do not cause or contribute to contemporary forms of slavery in the workplace and their supply chains.

“I strongly support these initiatives and urge all Member States to ratify the Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, develop robust and effective domestic legislation and boost enforcement on the ground.  The partnership of the private sector in implementing these efforts is critical,” said the Secretary-General.

Slavery

Slavery (Photo credit: quadelirus)

He also urged continued support for the UN Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery, which has helped restore human rights and dignity to tens of thousands of children, women and men for over 20 years, he said.

General Assembly President John Ashe said in his message that the Day serves as a reminder to all people that, much like its historical antecedent, modern slavery is an egregious violation of a person’s basic human rights. “The majority of those who suffer are the most vulnerable and marginalized in society,” he <“http://www.un.org/en/ga/president/68/news/international_day_for_the_abolition_of_slavery2013.shtml“>stated.

“Each year, hundreds of thousands of men, women and children are kidnapped and sold into bondage across international borders. Trafficking in persons is an issue of great global concern and affects almost all countries,” Mr. Ashe noted.

“This inhumane activity continues to flourish owing to vast economic disparities between nations, increasing flows of labour and commodities across international borders and transnational organized criminal networks.”

He called on Member States to eradicate slavery in all its forms; to boost initiatives that promote social inclusion; and to end all forms of discrimination. “We must promote and protect the rights of those most vulnerable within our societies, and help to restore the dignity of victims of slavery.”

New York, Dec  2 2013 11:00AM

 

#aceworldnews, #humanrightnews, #abolitionism, #ban-ki-moon, #human-rights, #international-day-for-the-abolition-of-slavery, #international-labour-organization, #international-observance, #london, #new-york, #slavery, #united-nations

“Ark of Return” Unveiled as Permanent Memorial to Re-Tell the Stories of 15 Million Slaves

English: African Burial Ground National Monume...

English: African Burial Ground National Monument, New York City Deutsch: African Burial Ground National Monument, New York City (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Manhattan-based architect of Haitian descent was recently announced as the winner of an international competition to design a memorial that will be permanently on display at United Nations Headquarters in New York to honour victims of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade.

Unveiling Rodney Leon’s “‘Ark of Return”, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the memorial “will serve as a reminder of the bravery of those slaves, abolitionists and unsung heroes who managed to rise up against an oppressive system, fight for their freedom and end the practice.”
The ceremony, held on the eve of the General Assembly’s annual debate, was also attended by the President of the body’s 68th session, John Ashe, who commended all participants in the competition for “being a voice of change and hope” whose ability to create meaningful artwork “deepens our faith in human goodness and decency, and for this, we are all grateful.”

The piece by Mr. Leon, a designer and architect of the African Burial Ground National Monument in lower Manhattan, features a “symbolic spiritual space and object where one can interact and pass through for acknowledgement, contemplation, meditation, reflection, healing, education and transformation,” according to its creator.

Mr. Leon’s work was selected from among 310 design proposals from 83 countries in a competition launched two years ago by the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), with support from the UN Department of Public Information’s Remember Slavery Programme, and Member States from the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the African Union. Jamaica, as the Chairman of the Permanent Memorial Committee, was represented at today’s event by Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller.

UNECO Director-General Irina Bokova, who also participated, said she was “moved” to be participating in the event given she just returned from Haiti where the memory of slavery and the slave trade carries precious significance not just of suffering but also of “victorious fight from oppression for freedom”.

Slavery

Slavery (Photo credit: quadelirus)

The design had to be created around the theme of “Acknowledging the Tragedy; Considering the legacy; Lest we forget “. It was to be not only a symbol, but part of an educational process in memory of slavery and the transatlantic slave trade, and to architecturally embody each affected region of the transatlantic slave trade – Africa, the Caribbean, Europe, and the Americas.
It also had to artistically complement to the landscape of the UN Headquarters, described by UNESCO as “an iconic site that will deepen, both visually and spiritually, the visitor’s experience of this important environment.”

The winning design was unanimously chosen by a committee of five international judges who met at UN Headquarters in August. Ahead of the judging, they spoke with UN Television about how their decisions were shaped.UN Television about how their decisions were shaped.

Ashfar Isahq is the Chairman of the International Children’s Art Foundation. He said he founded the organization to harness children’s imagination for positive change.

“At the end of the day, I and my work with children means that I have to look at an inner voice that tells me that this is what children and future generations will like,” Mr. Isahq said. “I listen to that inner voice to make my choice.”

Curator and artist Dominique Fontaine said she was looking for a certain aesthetic value, one “that will appeal to the viewer.”

From New York University, Michael Gomez, a professor of History and Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies who specializes in the African Diaspora, said he was primarily interested in identifying a piece that spoke directly to the experience of the transatlantic slave trade and the significance of that trade.

“I was interested in finding a project that would in some way give expression to that experience, and would allow those who would visit the memorial to have a good sense of what that experience was about and its ongoing implication for various societies,” Mr. Gomez told UN Producer, Mary Ferreira.

Meanwhile, David Boxer, a former curator at the National Gallery of Jamaica said the real challenge for him was to find a piece that both spoke to the tragedy itself – which he said required a memorial in a “more traditional sense” – and something that is inspirational.

Mr. Boxer said he was looking for a piece “that looks to the future, that deals with the whole question of hope. That things are going to improve, that things are going to become better. So it’s how do you combine those two sentiments into a single monument.”

Completing the jury, Nadia Bakhurji, and architect, women’s empowerment advocate and   former Board Member of Saudi Council of Engineers, said she knew the winning design right away.

“I had emotional reactions to some of the sculptures and I knew which one would be the right one because it has to be the one that will really inspire thought-provoking ideas, make you step back and say – oh my God, is that really what happened and how can we prevent that from happening again,” Ms. Bakhurji said.

She added that she was also looking for a design that bridged educational and spiritual experiences.

 

#african-burial-ground-national-monument, #atlantic-slave-trade, #caribbean-community, #haiti, #nadia-bakhurji, #national-gallery-of-jamaica, #portia-simpson-miller, #slavery, #unesco, #united-nations-headquarters

1807 was a momentous year in British history…

1807 was a momentous year in British history as it brought the abolition of the slave trade. Yet it is estimated that today around the world there are more slaves being held captive than ever before. Organisations like The Salvation Army have never ceased to raise awareness of the continuing problem and in the 126 countries in which we operate, human trafficking is a high priority and we respond in practical ways depending on the local need and our resources.

So where are the 21st century slaves? Yes, there are children held in parts of Africa, harvesting cocoa beans to make our chocolate; women in Asia are trapped and exploited to make the cheap clothes that we wear and discard; and in the South Pacific men are enslaved on ships. However, people are also enslaved right on our doorstep, living in our communities, in the UK. They are often hidden but not necessarily invisible; you may see them but not recognise them; but you can help them. http://www.localgov.co.uk/index.cfm?method=news.detail&id=109966

 

#abolitionism, #africa, #asia, #cocoa-bean, #history-of-the-british-isles, #human-trafficking, #salvation-army, #slavery

Slavery-v-Profit – But people are the losers

Photograph of a reproduction of the Emancipati...

Photograph of a reproduction of the Emancipation Proclamation (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Nearly one hundred and fifty years ago, in issuing the Emancipation Proclamation, President Abraham Lincoln reaffirmed the commitment of the United States to the enduring cause of freedom.Then as now, we stay steadfast in our resolve to see that all men,women, and children have the opportunity to realize this greatest of gifts.  Yet millions around the world including here in the United States—toil under the boot of modern slavery.  Mothers and fathers are forced to work in fields and factories against their will or in service to debts that can never be repaid.Sons and daughters are sold for sex, abducted as child soldiers, or coerced into involuntary labor.In dark corners of our world, and hidden in plain sight in our own communities,human beings are exploited for financial gain and subjected to unspeakable cruelty.

 Slavery remains the affront to human dignity and stain on our collective conscience that it has always been.   That is why members of my cabinet and senior advisors gathered at the White House the other day, at a meeting chaired by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, to lay out their plans for meeting this challenge. The United States is committed to eradicating trafficking in persons, and they pledged to draw on tools ranging from law enforcement and victim service provision, to public awareness building and diplomatic pressure.

They reiterated that government efforts are not enough, we are also increasing our partnerships with a broad coalition of local communities, faith-based and non-governmental organizations, schools, and businesses.

They agreed to bring all these elements together, and to be sure we are maximizing our efforts, today I am directing my cabinet to find ways to strengthen our current work, and to expand on partnerships with civil society and the private sector, so that we can bring more resources to bear in fighting this horrific injustice.  In the coming weeks the White House will build on this gathering on behalf of human dignity.  I am confident that we will one day end the scourge of modern slavery, because I believe in those committed to this issue: young people, people of faith and station, Americans who refuse to accept this injustice and will not rest until it is vanquished.

A reaffirmation that the United States stands with them, and that together we will realize the promise of the Emancipation Proclamation and our country’s ideal of freedom!

 

#abraham-lincoln, #emancipation-proclamation, #hillary-clinton, #human-trafficking, #human-rights, #president, #slavery, #united-states, #white-house