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SEEKONK, MASSACHUSETTS, United States

Sunday, December 10, 2017

FREEDOM UNITED. INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS DAY.

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Dear David,

Today is International Human Rights Day, commemorating when the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights sixty-nine years ago.

Since then, we’ve seen human rights activism evolve from being led by nations and global agencies to everyday people like you and me uniting our voices to help improve the human condition.

We want to show you why being an active part of the global movement to end modern slavery is crucial and today celebrate our supporters for the time, action and even donations they’ve given to secure freedom and justice for vulnerable people across the globe.  

There is strength in numbers. 
Through Freedom United supporters’ help, we reached over 1.3 million people to tell them about our call to urge the UN to investigate and close slave markets in Libya. 

This year we also brought global attention to persecution faced by anti-slavery activists working for the freedom of others in TurkmenistanMauritania and Thailand. 

Together we’ve urged nations to create strong anti-slavery policies that protect vulnerable workers beyond their borders and called on media houses to uphold the dignity of survivor voices in storytelling and reporting.
 
Over the course of 2017, we’ve partnered with 32 new organizations around the world, generated 10 new and robust campaigns, got our anti-slavery message out to several million people on social media, and organized, on average, a new action every month, both digitally and on the ground. 

Here are a few ways your voice has helped to secure justice and impact change on the global slavery problem in 2017:

March
Our campaign helped to free human rights activist and monitor Elena Urlaeva 
from detainment and punitive psychiatric treatment for her work monitoring state-sanctioned forced labor in Uzbekistan’s annual cotton harvest.
 
May

We delivered over 180,000 signatures with partners Mining Justice Alliance, Mining Watch Canada and SumOfUs to Nevsun Resources’ Annual General Meeting in Vancouver to show the company and investors that profiting from slavery is unacceptable.

August

Building on momentum in the region, our Help End Forced Marriage in Lebanon campaign supported national efforts to repeal ‘marry your rapist’ laws that allowed perpetrators to escape punishment.

September

Together with our partner Yazda, our campaign urging the UN to take action on slavery perpetrated by ISIS resulted in the Security Council unanimously passing resolution 2379 to establish an Investigative Team to end slavery in conflict and prosecute those responsible for war crimes.

October

Queen Elizabeth II reportedly called for a Modern Slavery Act, similar to the United Kingdom’s 2015 law, to be adopted in all 52 Commonwealth countries in order to better tackle modern slavery and human trafficking globally. This potential support from the Queen is important because it’s a step toward getting modern slavery on the agenda at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in 2018.

We thank you for tirelessly joining us in the fight against slavery. 
There’s still much work to do and we know we can count on you to keep the momentum.

Here’s to even more campaign wins and significant strides toward justice in 2018! Please forward this email to inspire others to join us in this important work.

Happy International Human Rights Day,

Joanna, Alex, Miriam, Kat and the entire team at Freedom Unite