Our mission to mitigate modern slavery
Posted on July 7th, 2023
Slavery is not a word we hear much in day-to-day life.
But it’s not a term that can be confined to the history books.
Slavery is still very much alive these days and it occurs in every country, including Australia.
Modern slavery is a non-legal umbrella term that is used to describe practices like:
- Human trafficking
- Slavery or slavery-like conditions
- Forced labour
- Debt bondage
- Deceptive recruitment for labour or services
- Forced marriage
- Worst forms of child labour
Modern slavery refers to situations of exploitation where a person cannot refuse or leave, because of threats, violence, coercion, abuse of power or deception.
Today, deceptive means are used by agents, recruiters and employers to hold captive their workforce and exploit their labour.
Children and vulnerable workers are targeted, using control tactics such as charging extortionate recruitment fees and deductions, debts, threats of violence, arrest and deportation, withholding of wages and confiscation or destruction of identity documents.
People of any age, gender, social situation or race can end up in slavery-like conditions.
The Catholic Diocese’ vision to mitigate modern slavery
At CatholicCare feel very strongly about respecting and protecting the freedom and dignity of people everywhere, especially those who are most vulnerable and cannot stand up for themselves.
Our commitment to raising awareness, engaging and educating staff, contractors and other key stakeholders to take individual responsibility to identify modern slavery practices in their own business operations and lives, is just one of the practical steps we are taking in the fight against modern slavery.
We are focused on building and maintaining strong, working relationships with our contractors and suppliers who share the same goal as us – to protect people, the environment and business in a sustainable and ethical way.
As part of the Catholic Diocese of Rockhampton, CatholicCare is an active member of the Australian Catholic Anti-Slavery Network (ACAN).
To find out more about CatholicCare’s commitment to protecting people, the environment and business in a sustainable and ethical way, you can read more through our:
How you can help
There are many ways you can get involved in fighting back against modern slavery.
Knowledge is power in the fight against modern slavery.
There are many websites that can provide information and education so that you can become more aware of the travesty.
Here are a couple to get you started:
Be an ethical consumer
It’s tempting to get the ‘cheaper priced item’ on the shelf, but you could be doing more damage than good.
The Good On You App helps you check on-the-go whether fashion brands have ethical policies regarding modern slavery and child labour.
Spread the word
Now that you are more aware of the impact of modern slavery, you can help by making others aware: friends, family, co-workers.
There is always strength in numbers. We are all responsible to do our part in eradicating modern slavery from the world.
On a business level
Become a SEDEX member and lead the way to an ethical future.
SEDEX is a membership organisation that provides one of the world’s leading online platforms for companies to manage and improve working conditions in global supply chains.
Their vision is to drive organisations globally to improve the lives of the people they impact. To find out more click here.