The Essam and Dalal Obaid Foundation (EDOF) and the CNN Freedom Project have launched the first step in a new, ongoing partnership that will seek to educate and advocate against human trafficking. The campaign began on March 23, 2015, with a PSA video calling for an end to modern day slavery that will air for one year at the beginning and end of all CNN Freedom Project documentaries. EDOF will also be lending support and messaging to the Freedom Project’s blog that features a diverse range of voices, from celebrity activists to anti-slavery campaigners, raising awareness of and suggesting solutions to human trafficking.
“We are very pleased to be working with the CNN Freedom Project on this vital initiative,” says EDOF CEO Nawaf Obaid. “Despite continuing efforts, modern slavery remains a fact in our world, with wide-ranging social, economic, and humanitarian ramifications. All governments and businesses must join forces to stop this heinous global crime, and this new partnership between EDOF and CNN will work toward this goal.”
EDOF is partnering with the CNN Freedom Project because of its long-standing commitment to bringing greater global awareness to the problem of human trafficking. The Freedom Project has been pivotal in not only spreading information about the issue, but it has been able to catalyze concrete action by donor countries, international organizations, NGO’s, and private foundations through passionate storytelling, investigative journalism, documentaries, and live events.
To date, the CNN Freedom Project has reported over 400 unique stories on human trafficking across more than 60 countries, provided evidence that has led to the liberation of over 1000 people, sparked tens of millions of dollars in donations to anti-trafficking organizations, and helped change laws and multi-national corporate policies around the world.
CNN Freedom Project documentary wins award
We are pleased to announce Canada's Stolen Daughters, a CNN Freedom Project documentary on the sexual exploitation of children in Canada's indigenous community, has been recognized by « Beyond Borders ECPAT Canada » with the 2016 International Media Award.
« Beyond Borders ECPAT Canada » is a bilingual national advocacy organization advancing the rights of children everywhere to be free from sexual abuse and exploitation. Being the Canadian representative of ECPAT International, they have been honoring journalists for their coverage of child sexual exploitation and related issues since 2002.
The Safe Harbor/Rachel’s Law” has officially gone into effect
After months of surveilling and filming the streets of Atlanta, CNN Freedom project aired the documentary « Children For Sale » with Jada Pinkett Smith revealing the importance of human trafficking in the heart of America. Following the airing of this documentary, the interviews of survivors as well as former traffickers, the Georgia lawmakers decided to take action. The Safe Harbor / Rachel’s Law has now officially gone into effect since November 2016.
The Governor Nathan Deal has placed an annual tax on strip clubs, increased penalties against convicted human traffickers and now directs proceeds from property impounded during their arrests to establish the Safe Harbor for Sexually Exploited Children Fund. It also instructs police to recognize prostituted children as victims instead of criminals, and uses the money from the fund to place the children into safe houses instead of Youth Detention facilities.
CNN mobilizes students for global day of action against human trafficking
Tony Maddox, EVP and Managing Director of CNN International announced that CNN is teaming up with young people around the globe for a unique, student-led day of action against modern-day slavery. #MyFreedomDay will therefore take place on March 14th 2017. Television networks will show the world what students, schools and communities are doing to fight slavery with live coverage of their anti-trafficking rallies. CNN correspondents around the world will also report on these various student-hosted events.
That content will be showcased in a dynamic, interactive video wall on CNN.com/myfreedom and across CNN’s television and social platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat.
CNN will complement those user-generated submissions by publishing a series of stories that highlight real-life examples of how children are approached by human traffickers in addition to recent studies and statistics from support organizations.
Italy raises awareness to tackle human trafficking
In 2016, EDOF has collaborated with Italy’s Ministry of Education to educate young people across the country about human trafficking and modern-day slavery. This development is part of the Italian government’s initiative to tackle such issues at a time when there is greater risk of human trafficking due to increased levels of migration across Europe.
Under the agreement, video material from CNN Freedom Project will be used to increase awareness about human trafficking and modern-day slavery among Italian students. The award-winning journalism, spanning reports, documentaries and digital content, will be used in classrooms to promote practical solutions to improve the care of people affected by such issues. Italian students will also be encouraged to join and contribute to the CNN Freedom Project’s efforts.
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