Freeing Slaves Doesn’t End Slavery

Brother Xavier Passat, the National Coordinator of the labor slavery program of Pastoral Land Commission of the Brazilian Episcopal Conference, introduced the topic of labor slavery in Brazil.

The labor slave population he works with is comprised of mostly young men (ages 18-35) who are trafficked to remote northern areas of Brazil. The regions that have seen the highest rates of deforestation in the Amazon also have some of the highest rates of human trafficking and labor exploitation.

Conditions in these areas are terrible (poor water, no medical care, little food) and workers are not given protective gear (gloves, sturdy shoes).

As he painted this dire picture one statement really stood out: “Freeing slaves doesn’t eradicate slavery.” He went on to describe how cycles of human exploitation will continue until root causes are addressed – things such as lack of educational opportunities, poverty, and lax environmental regulation enforcement.

CRS has funded programs to assist in the identification of labor trafficking victims in Brazil as well as to return them to their home communities.

– Jennifer Hardy, CRS communications coordinator

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2 Responses to “Freeing Slaves Doesn’t End Slavery”

  1. Devon Says:

    How CRS try to reassimilate former slaves back into the community?

  2. John Lindner Says:

    Devon, good question.
    Check out this link: http://crs.org/public-policy/trafficking.cfm
    The information there should at least begin to answer that question.
    We plan to track this issue more frequently on the blog as well.
    -jl

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