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2013 Trust Women Actions

Source: Thu, 5 Dec 2013 05:12 PM
Author: Thomson Reuters Foundation
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Trust Women’s commitment to concrete solutions distinguishes it from other women’s rights events. The speakers attending the conference are asked to present a specific action that directly addresses a problem facing women in the world. In specific ‘action groups’ delegates are then encouraged to contribute, offering concrete help and solutions.

The two-day Conference forged the following commitments to action:

  • The Polaris Project will create a Global Human Trafficking Hotline Network to connect all existing human trafficking hotlines and provide a worldwide safety net for survivors. Dasra, one of the biggest social enterprises in India, has offered to help. Tau Investment Management has offered to support this initiative in the countries where they operate.
  • The Human Rights Law Network has committed to launch The Global Legal Network to End Coerced and Forced Sterilization. The project will assess the scale of the issue worldwide and develop a database of laws pertaining to it. TrustLaw Connect (the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s service for pro bono legal assistance), Dasra (India), the Women’s Legal Centre (South Africa) and Women’s Global Network for Reproductive Rights will provide assistance.
  • Safeway proposed the development of tools to map supply chains risks and raise alerts, using information from NGOs, social media, government agencies and open data. Thomson Reuters Corporation will provide assistance.
  • Free the Slaves suggested the use of unmanned aerial vehicles to locate and document slave labour. They believe UAVs could be used to facilitate police raids, and that video footage could also be used in a documentary film to raise awareness about slavery. MAKE Productions has offered assistance for the documentary. The Asian Development Bank has committed to help with research in the area of global good practices related to 'safe mobility' and their applicability to the context of its South Asia operations.
  • Verité called on companies to commit to work with ethical brokers to scrap all recruitment fees paid by workers in order to eliminate debt-bondage among migrant labourers. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has committed to partner with Verité in this endeavour and work with its clients to:
  1. Understand and identify risks with respect to their business processes, sectors and supply chains.
  2. Develop tools to mitigate the risks and build capacity to promote good practice with respect to their sub-contractors’ practices.
  3. Identify indicators that they can use to measure success with respect to economic and social performance.
  • Thomson Reuters Corporation and Lexis Nexis have offered assistance.
  • Sex-trafficking survivor Minh Dang proposed the creation of a network of pro bono mental health therapists to support victims of trafficking. Shukla Sarwat Siraj from law firm Sadat Sarwat & Associates and a few delegate organizations expressed interested in connecting Minh Dang with a number of specialists.
  • Philippines-based Visayan Forum Foundation will launch a global campaign to lobby countries to ratify ILO Domestic Workers Convention 189 and pass laws to comply with it. Human Rights Watch, the Wadah Foundation and Rosi Orozco from the Commission United against Human Trafficking (Mexico) have extended their support to the initiative.
  • Ashoka Global Vice President Iman Bibars proposed to establish a task force to research, investigate, monitor and document claims of Jihad al-Nikah in Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Tunisia and elsewhere, with a view to lobbying governments and international institutions to classify the practice as human trafficking and criminalize it accordingly. Aequitas and documentary filmmaker Jenny Montasir will provide help.
  • Photojournalist Hazel Thompson has committed to use materials from her photo-documentary ebook TAKEN to produce print and audio-video material for a prevention campaign throughout India, Nepal and Bangladesh to raise awareness about trafficking and its risks among Indian girls aged 8-16. Hewlett-Packard, Shukla Sarwat Siraj from law firm Sadat Sarwat & Associates and Wadah Foundation are considering providing assistance with translation, publication, distribution and legal issues.
  • Everyday Sexism’s Laura Bates proposed the launch of a viral international campaign to raise awareness about abuse in teen relationships. The campaign would use info-graphics, videos and quizzes to raise awareness about what constitutes violence and the definition of consent to tackle the normalization of these forms of physical and sexual violence. Miranda Dunbar Johnson of Human Rights Watch will help launch the campaign in France. The American Bar Association Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence, Girls not Brides, Anna Hart from law firm Skadden, and Rosi Orozco from the Commission United Against Human Trafficking have expressed interest in helping with the initiative.
  • Associate Professor and Chair of Anthropology at Pomona College Pardis Mahdavi proposed the creation of a global online portal to record and archive stories of trafficking survivor. Hollaback and Rosi Orozco from the Commission United against Human Trafficking have offered help.
  • Acid Survivors Foundation asked for help to research global mental health laws in order to ensure that Bangladesh’s draft mental health bill meets international standards. TrustLaw Connect, Global Fund for Women and the University of Amsterdam have committed to assist.
  • AEquitas will work with Westlaw (Thomson Reuters) to build a tool integrating data, research, media coverage and laws relevant to sexual violence prosecution that could sit on the Westlaw site and be available to all prosecutors.
  • Rola Hallam proposed to address the psychosocial needs of women and children affected by Syria's conflict by channelling financial support to the Arab Foundation of Care for Victims of War and Torture, which provides six-week courses to help refugees in Jordan overcome trauma. The organisation is prepared to scale up its activities in other countries with large Syrian refugee populations but needs funding. Raw in War offered assistance.
  • UNHCR Director of International Protection Volker Turk proposed to establish a forum for Syrian refugee women to meet and share their stories of empowerment and displacement. UNHCR has also asked for media support to keep the spotlight on women’s issues in conflict. Laura Bates from Everyday Sexism has committed to provide assistance
  • The Southern Africa Litigation Centre asked for the support of lawyers willing to litigate cases of HIV-positive-women subjected to forced sterilization. Operation Fistula and Hausfeld & Co have expressed interest in helping.
  • Marie Stopes International China will launch a global initiative to educate young unmarried migrant workers in reproductive rights and health. Standard Chartered, Tau Investment Management and Nazdeek have offered assistance.
  • The Center for Reproductive Rights proposed the launch of a global campaign to put human rights at the centre of affordable access to contraception. White & Case has offered assistance.


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