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modern slavery

This World Day Against Child Labour is a poignant one for me. It's been over three years since I started living as a more conscious consumer, by educating myself about child labour in the products I buy and use. That all started with a little blue dress I bought in England.
Here in Canada, we know the importance of protecting children, so they have a chance to be children. But in many parts of the world, a child Derrick's age would already be working 12-hour shifts through pain, exhaustion, and abuse.
While many believe slavery is an issue of the past, it remains a real, yet largely hidden, problem. An estimated 35.8 million
Currently, Canada is operating a temporary foreign worker program under which employers may bring foreign workers into Canada to work for a set period of time. The temporary workers are bound to their employer and may not quit for any reason or seek other employment. As it turns out, the control employers have over the workers runs far deeper than that at least in some cases.
What have you heard about Burma, Tibet, Northern Cyprus? Even less than Syria, North Korea, Sudan and Democratic Republic of Congo. Don't look. Pretend it's not happening-or pretend that efforts at peace will work-if we just give it enough time. Rwanda took more than 100 days. The Jewish people waited five years. Syria has been in conflagration for three years. Talk. Talk. Talk. Well maybe there will be talk. But then who's listening. The media? There is a certain presence of an absence in far too many hot spots.
Last year, I released a proposal for a national action plan to combat human trafficking called 'Connecting the Dots.' The complex nature of trafficking in persons and the rapidly increasing occurrence of human trafficking demands a comprehensive approach that draws together existing frameworks, stakeholders, and agencies.