Speak free

What we're talking about right now.

Acting against state-imposed forced labor Forced Labor
Tuesday March 30, 2021

Acting against state-imposed forced labor at the UN Global Compact U.K.

Freedom United's Executive Director, Joanna Ewart-James, spoke at the UN Global Compact Network U.K.’s Business & Human Rights Summit 2021 where she explored how some forced labor systems are organized by governments, embedding forced labor into our economic systems and creating a dependency on exploitation. Systems of state-imposed forced labor mean businesses can't just rely on governments to respect human rights – businesses themselves must interrogate their supply chains and take responsibility for rights abuses. If you missed the event, you can read Joanna Ewart-James'

Read more
Joint Civil Society Monitoring Finds Systemic Forced Labor in Turkmen Cotton Harvest Forced Labor
Tuesday March 23, 2021

Joint civil society monitoring finds systemic forced labor in Turkmenistan cotton harvest

A new joint report by leading independent Turkmen human rights groups exposes systemic forced labor during the 2020 cotton harvest in Turkmenistan, said the Cotton Campaign, a coalition of organizations including Freedom United. The report, Review of the Use of Forced Labor in Turkmenistan During the 2020 Cotton Harvest, was released today by Turkmen.news and the Turkmen Initiative for Human Rights, both members of the Cotton Campaign coalition. The report is based on evidence documented by trained civil society monitors and local sources of information in four of Turkmenistan’s five

Read more
Law & Policy
Monday March 22, 2021

EU Parliament backs corporate accountability, but law can be strengthened

On March 10, 2021, the European Parliament voted overwhelmingly in favor of a new EU law — 504 in favor, 79 against, and 112 abstentions — by adopting Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee (JURI) legislative report by MEP Lara Wolters on corporate due diligence and corporate accountability.     This is an important step forward as this now tasks the European Commission to come up with a draft proposal, which is expected mid-2021, that should require businesses to conduct due diligence in order to prevent and address human rights and environmental risks and impacts within their own

Read more
Forced Labor
Tuesday March 9, 2021

Recommendations to U.S. Customs and Border regarding tainted palm oil

March 9, 2021 Today, as the petitioners in the FGV Holdings Berhad case that led to the block of the company’s palm oil imports into the US,  Global Labor Justice- International Labor Rights Forum (GLJ-ILRF) Rainforest Action Network, SumofUs, as well as our partner Freedom United share recommendations for effective enforcement of the block. In the letter to U.S. Customs and Border, linked below, we have laid out what we think should be required of FGV to successfully demonstrate that their palm oil is not being produced using forced labor and in violation of Section 1307 of the Tariff

Read more
Freedom United event 'Taking the trafficking out of sex work' Law & Policy
Friday February 12, 2021

Q&A from Freedom United’s online event ‘Taking the trafficking out of sex work’

On February 3, Freedom United hosted an online event with an expert panel of speakers exploring how to build resilience to sex trafficking. We're grateful to our panelists, Professor Nick Mai from the University of Newcastle, Esta Steyn from Be Slavery Free, Nadia Whittome MP, Charlotte from the English Collective of Prostitutes, Mariah Grant from Sex Workers Project and Megan Hector from DecrimNow, for taking part in this important discussion. We were impressed by everyone who joined in the discussion and with over 200 people tuning in live, we received many questions! So, we’re

Read more