Here is how we are changing the game:
We are working to transform the roles and relationships between the various stakeholders involved in the fight against modern slavery. Titles like "student," "expert," or even 'survivor" often become barriers that limit the extent of our cooperation, and ultimately our progress.
We believe that everyone possesses their own sphere of influence; that everyone can bring their own unique history, experiences, skills and expertise to the fight; and that diversity is an asset in the fight against human trafficking. This is only true, however, if we can leverage it.
Too often human rights work is seen as softer work than other professions. On the contrary, we take this work so seriously and believe this is such a high honor and call to service that we are bringing the strongest practitioners, minds, and hearts together to create one united global network fighting to end modern slavery. Regardless of a title, regardless of an affiliation, regardless of age, regardless of perceived resources – we want you to step outside those labels and see these issues of exploitation from fresh perspectives in order to create the best solutions.
We believe whole-heartedly that students are critical to driving that dynamic, innovative and unstoppable change where justice becomes always a step ahead of exploitation. The protection of one person will make investing heavily in these efforts worthwhile. The exploitation of even one person in modern slavery will keep us giving our absolute best to push for justice.
So where do we see the true potential?
The answer: when all of us come together, understand the capabilities of one another, trust one another, and build on each other's work to create holistic, sustainable, and scalable solutions. It won't just be the NGOs or the lawyers, it won't just be those labeled as "social justice warriors," but rather it will be every person in their profession recognizing how they can be a force for justice. Whether it's early childhood education, poverty alleviation, policy changes, restoration of victims, stronger law enforcement, greater data analytics and technological innovations, more equipped healthcare providers to connect victims with social workers, or even just one neighbor being conscious of how to look out for another person, everyone has a role to play and we need everyone to bring their absolute highest quality of work to the table.
Whether it be through early childhood education, poverty alleviation, policy changes, survivor support, strengthening law enforcement, improving data analytics and technological tools, equipping healthcare providers and social workers, or even simply making more informed consumer choices; everyone has a role to play.
Regardless of your title, affiliation, age, industry, or perceived resources, you are enmeshed in the tragedy of modern slavery. We invite you to step outside of those labels, to see these issues of exploitation from a fresh (and yes, personal) perspective, and to open your mind to interdisciplinary solutions.
Finally, we believe with conviction that students are critical to creating a world in which justice outdoes exploitation. It is in the hearts and minds of young people today that tomorrow’s leaders are born. We want to equip students with the network and resources that will empower them to create the world we dream of.