John Locke

John Locke FRS (pron.: /ˈlɒk/; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704), widely known as the Father of Classical Liberalism,[2][3][4] was an English philosopher and physician regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers. Considered one of the first of the British empiricists, following the tradition of Francis Bacon, he is equally important to social contract theory. His work had a great impact upon the development […]

John Locke FRS (pron.: /?l?k/; 29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704), widely known as the Father of Classical Liberalism,[2][3][4] was an English philosopher and physician regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers. Considered one of the first of the British empiricists, following the tradition of Francis Bacon, he is equally important to social contract theory. His work had a great impact upon the development of epistemology and political philosophy. His writings influenced Voltaire and Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American revolutionaries. His contributions to classical republicanism and liberal theory are reflected in the United States Declaration of Independence.[5]

Locke’s theory of mind is often cited as the origin of modern conceptions of identity and the self, figuring prominently in the work of later philosophers such as HumeRousseau and Kant. Locke was the first to define the self through a continuity of consciousness. He postulated that the mind was a blank slate or tabula rasa. Contrary to pre-existing Cartesian philosophy, he maintained that we are born without innate ideas, and that knowledge is instead determined only by experience derived from sense perception.[6]

Locke exercised a profound influence on political philosophy, in particular on modern liberalism. Michael Zuckert has argued that Locke launched liberalism by tempering Hobbesian absolutism and clearly separating the realms of Church and State. He had a strong influence on Voltaire who called him “le sage Locke”. His arguments concerning liberty and the social contract later influenced the written works of Alexander HamiltonJames MadisonThomas Jefferson, and other Founding Fathers of the United States. In fact, one passage from the Second Treatise is reproduced verbatim in the Declaration of Independence, the reference to a “long train of abuses.” Such was Locke’s influence that Thomas Jefferson wrote: “Bacon, Locke and Newton … I consider them as the three greatest men that have ever lived, without any exception, and as having laid the foundation of those superstructures which have been raised in the Physical and Moral sciences”.[11][12][13] Today, most contemporary libertarians claim Locke as an influence.

But Locke’s influence may have been even more profound in the realm of epistemology. Locke redefined subjectivity, or self, and intellectual historians such as Charles Taylor and Jerrold Seigel argue that Locke’s An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690) marks the beginning of the modern Western conception of the self.

Locke, writing his Letters Concerning Toleration (1689–92) in the aftermath of the European wars of religion, formulated a classic reasoning for religious tolerance. Three arguments are central: (1) Earthly judges, the state in particular, and human beings generally, cannot dependably evaluate the truth-claims of competing religious standpoints; (2) Even if they could, enforcing a single “true religion” would not have the desired effect, because belief cannot be compelled by violence; (3) Coercing religious uniformity would lead to more social disorder than allowing diversity.[15]

Appraisals of Locke have often been tied to appraisals of liberalism in general, and also to appraisals of the United States. Detractors note that (in 1671) he was a major investor in the English slave-trade through the Royal African Company, as well as through his participation in drafting the Fundamental Constitution of the Carolinas while Shaftesbury‘s secretary, which established a feudal aristocracy and gave a master absolute power over his slaves. For example, Martin Cohen notes that as a secretary to the Council of Trade and Plantations (1673–4) and a member of the Board of Trade (1696–1700) Locke was, in fact, “one of just half a dozen men who created and supervised both the colonies and their iniquitous systems of servitude”.[16] Some see his statements on unenclosed property as having been intended to justify the displacement of the Native Americans.[17][18] Because of his opposition to aristocracy and slavery in his major writings, he is accused of hypocrisy and racism, or of caring only for the liberty of English capitalists.[19]

Locke uses the word property in both broad and narrow senses. In a broad sense, it covers a wide range of human interests and aspirations; more narrowly, it refers to material goods. He argues that property is a natural right and it is derived from labour.

In Chapter V of his Second Treatise, Locke argues that the individual ownership of goods and property is justified by the labour exerted to produce those goods or utilise property to produce goods beneficial to human society.[20]

Locke stated his belief, in his Second Treatise, that nature on its own provides little of value to society; he provides the implication that the labour expended in the creation of goods gives them their value. This is used as supporting evidence for the interpretation of Locke’s labour theory of property as a labour theory of value, in his implication that goods produced by nature are of little value, unless combined with labour in their production and that labour is what gives goods their value.[20]

Locke believed that ownership of property is created by the application of labour. In addition, he believed property precedes government and government cannot “dispose of the estates of the subjects arbitrarily.” Karl Marx later critiqued Locke’s theory of property in his own social theory.

Locke’s political theory was founded on social contract theory. Unlike Thomas Hobbes, Locke believed that human nature is characterised by reason and tolerance. Like Hobbes, Locke believed that human nature allowed men to be selfish. This is apparent with the introduction of currency. In a natural state all people were equal and independent, and everyone had a natural right to defend his “Life, health, Liberty, or Possessions”.[21] Most scholars trace the phrase, “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” in the American Declaration of Independence to Locke’s theory of rights,[22] though other origins have been suggested.[23]

Like Hobbes, Locke assumed that the sole right to defend in the state of nature was not enough, so people established a civil society to resolve conflicts in a civil way with help from government in a state of society. However, Locke never refers to Hobbes by name and may instead have been responding to other writers of the day.[24] Locke also advocated governmental separation of powersand believed that revolution is not only a right but an obligation in some circumstances. These ideas would come to have profound influence on the Declaration of Independence and theConstitution of the United States.

Along with Rousseau’s Emile (1762), Locke’s Some Thoughts Concerning Education was one of the foundational eighteenth-century texts on educational theory. In Britain, it was considered the standard treatment of the topic for over a century. For this reason, some critics have maintained that Some Thoughts Concerning Education vies with the Essay Concerning Human Understanding for the title of Locke’s most influential work. Some of Locke’s contemporaries, such as seventeenth-century German philosopher and mathematician Gottfried Leibniz, believed this as well; Leibniz argued that Some Thoughts superseded even the Essay in its impact on European society.[54]

Locke’s Some Thoughts Concerning Education was a runaway bestseller. During the eighteenth century alone, Some Thoughts was published in at least 53 editions: 25 English, 16 French, six Italian, three German, two Dutch, and one Swedish.[55] It was also excerpted in novels such as Samuel Richardson‘s Pamela (1740–1), and it formed the theoretical basis of much children’s literature, particularly that of the first successful children’s publisher,John Newbery. According to James Secord, an eighteenth-century scholar, Newbery included Locke’s educational advice to legitimize the new genre of children’s literature. Locke’s imprimatur would ensure the genre’s success.[56]

By the end of the eighteenth century, Locke’s influence on educational thought was widely acknowledged. In 1772 James Whitchurch wrote in his Essay Upon Education that Locke was “an Author, to whom the Learned must ever acknowledge themselves highly indebted, and whose Name can never be mentioned without a secret Veneration, and Respect; his Assertions being the result of intense Thought, strict Enquiry, a clear and penetrating Judgment.”[57] Writers as politically dissimilar as Sarah Trimmer, in her periodical The Guardian of Education (1802–6),[58] and Maria Edgeworth, in the educational treatise she penned with her father, Practical Education (1798), invoked Locke’s ideas. Even Rousseau, while disputing Locke’s central claim that parents should treat their children as rational beings, acknowledged his debt to Locke.[59]

John Cleverley and D. C. Phillips place Locke’s Some Thoughts Concerning Education at the beginning of a tradition of educational theory which they label “environmentalism.” In the years following the publication of Locke’s work, Etienne Bonnot de Condillac and Claude Adrien Helvétius eagerly adopted the idea that people’s minds were shaped through their experiences and thus through their education. Systems of teaching children through their senses proliferated throughout Europe. In Switzerland, Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi, relying on Locke’s theories, developed the concept of the “object lesson.” These lessons focused pupils’ attention on a particular thing and encouraged them to use all of their senses to explore it and urged them to use precise words to describe it. Used throughout Europe and America during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, these object lessons, according to one of their practitioners “if well-managed, cultivate Sense-Perception, or Observation, accustom children to express their thoughts in words, increase their available stock of words and of ideas, and by thus storing material for thinking, also prepare the way for more difficult and advanced study.”[60]

Such techniques were also integral to Maria Montessori’s methods in the twentieth century. According to Cleverley and Phillips, the television show Sesame Street is also “based on Lockean assumptions—its aim has been to give underprivileged children, especially in the inner cities, the simple ideas and basic experiences that their environment normally does not provide.”[61] In many ways, despite Locke’s continuing influence, as these authors point out, the twentieth century has been dominated by the “nature vs. nurture” debate in a way that Locke’s century was not. Locke’s optimistic “environmentalism,” though qualified in his text, is now no longer just a moral issue – it is also a scientific issue.[62]

Limits to accumulation

Labour creates property, but it also does contain limits to its accumulation: man’s capacity to produce and man’s capacity to consume. According to Locke, unused property is waste and an offence against nature.[25] However, with the introduction of “durable” goods, men could exchange their excessive perishable goods for goods that would last longer and thus not offend the natural law. The introduction of money marks the culmination of this process. Money makes possible the unlimited accumulation of property without causing waste through spoilage.[26] He also includes gold or silver as money because they may be “hoarded up without injury to anyone,”[27] since they do not spoil or decay in the hands of the possessor. The introduction of money eliminates the limits of accumulation. Locke stresses that inequality has come about by tacit agreement on the use of money, not by the social contract establishing civil society or the law of land regulating property. Locke is aware of a problem posed by unlimited accumulation but does not consider it his task. He just implies that government would function to moderate the conflict between the unlimited accumulation of property and a more nearly equal distribution of wealth and does not say which principles that government should apply to solve this problem. However, not all elements of his thought form a consistent whole. For example, labour theory of value of the Two Treatises of Government stands side by side with the demand-and-supply theory developed in a letter he wrote titled Some Considerations on the Consequences of the Lowering of Interest and the Raising of the Value of Money. Moreover, Locke anchors property in labour but in the end upholds the unlimited accumulation of wealth.[28]

When Locke began writing the letters that would eventually become Some Thoughts on Education, he was addressing an aristocrat, but the final text appeals to a much wider audience.[40] For example, Locke writes: “I place Vertue [sic] as the first and most necessary of those Endowments, that belong to a Man or a Gentleman.”[41] James Axtell, who edited the most comprehensive edition of Locke’s educational writings, has explained that although “he was writing for this small class, this does not preclude the possibility that many of the things he said about education, especially its main principles, were equally applicable to all children” (Axtell’s emphasis).[42] This was a contemporary view as well; Pierre Coste, in his introduction in the first French edition in 1695, wrote, “it is certain that this Work was particularly designed for the education of Gentlemen: but this does not prevent its serving also for the education of all sorts of Children, of whatever class they are.”[43]

While it is possible to apply Locke’s general principles of education to all children, and contemporaries such as Coste certainly did so, Locke himself, despite statements that may imply the contrary, believed that Some Thoughts applied only to the wealthy and the middle-class (or as they would have been referred to at the time, the “middling sorts”). As Peter Gay writes, “[i]t never occurred to him that every child should be educated or that all those to be educated should be educated alike. Locke believed that until the school system was reformed, a gentleman ought to have his son trained at home by a tutor. As for the poor, they do not appear in Locke’s little book at all.”[44]

In his “Essay on the Poor Law,” Locke turns to the education of the poor; he laments that “the children of labouring people are an ordinary burden to the parish, and are usually maintained in idleness, so that their labour also is generally lost to the public till they are 12 or 14 years old.”[45] He suggests, therefore, that “working schools” be set up in each parish in England for poor children so that they will be “from infancy [three years old] inured to work.”[46] He goes on to outline the economics of these schools, arguing not only that they will be profitable for the parish, but also that they will instill a good work ethic in the children.

On price theory

Locke’s general theory of value and price is a supply and demand theory, which was set out in a letter to a Member of Parliament in 1691, titled Some Considerations on the Consequences of the Lowering of Interest and the Raising of the Value of Money.[29] Supply is quantity and demand is rent. “The price of any commodity rises or falls by the proportion of the number of buyer and sellers.” and “that which regulates the price… [of goods] is nothing else but their quantity in proportion to their rent.” The quantity theory of money forms a special case of this general theory. His idea is based on “money answers all things” (Ecclesiastes) or “rent of money is always sufficient, or more than enough,” and “varies very little…” Regardless of whether the demand for money is unlimited or constant, Locke concludes that as far as money is concerned, the demand is exclusively regulated by its quantity. He also investigates the determinants of demand and supply. For supply, goods in general are considered valuable because they can be exchanged, consumed and they must be scarce. For demand, goods are in demand because they yield a flow of income. Locke develops an early theory of capitalisation, such as land, which has value because “by its constant production of saleable commodities it brings in a certain yearly income.” Demand for money is almost the same as demand for goods or land; it depends on whether money is wanted as medium of exchange or as loanable funds. For medium of exchange “money is capable by exchange to procure us the necessaries or conveniences of life.” For loanable funds, “it comes to be of the same nature with land by yielding a certain yearly income … or interest.”

Monetary thoughts

Locke distinguishes two functions of money, as a “counter” to measure value, and as a “pledge” to lay claim to goods. He believes that silver and gold, as opposed to paper money, are the appropriate currency for international transactions. Silver and gold, he says, are treated to have equal value by all of humanity and can thus be treated as a pledge by anyone, while the value of paper money is only valid under the government which issues it.

Locke argues that a country should seek a favourable balance of trade, lest it fall behind other countries and suffer a loss in its trade. Since the world money stock grows constantly, a country must constantly seek to enlarge its own stock. Locke develops his theory of foreign exchanges, in addition to commodity movements, there are also movements in country stock of money, and movements of capital determine exchange rates. The latter is less significant and less volatile than commodity movements. As for a country’s money stock, if it is large relative to that of other countries, it will cause the country’s exchange to rise above par, as an export balance would do.

He also prepares estimates of the cash requirements for different economic groups (landholders, labourers and brokers). In each group the cash requirements are closely related to the length of the pay period. He argues the brokers – middlemen – whose activities enlarge the monetary circuit and whose profits eat into the earnings of labourers and landholders, had a negative influence on both one’s personal and the public economy that they supposedly contributed to.

The self

Locke defines the self as “that conscious thinking thing, (whatever substance, made up of whether spiritual, or material, simple, or compounded, it matters not) which is sensible, or conscious of pleasure and pain, capable of happiness or misery, and so is concerned for itself, as far as that consciousness extends”.[30] He does not, however, ignore “substance”, writing that “the body too goes to the making the man.”[31] The Lockean self is therefore a self-aware and self-reflective consciousness that is fixed in a body.

In his Essay, Locke explains the gradual unfolding of this conscious mind. Arguing against both the Augustinian view of man as originally sinful and the Cartesian position, which holds that man innately knows basic logical propositions, Locke posits an “empty” mind, a tabula rasa, which is shaped by experience; sensations and reflections being the two sources of all our ideas.[32]

Locke’s Some Thoughts Concerning Education is an outline on how to educate this mind: he expresses the belief that education maketh the man, or, more fundamentally, that the mind is an “empty cabinet”, with the statement, “I think I may say that of all the men we meet with, nine parts of ten are what they are, good or evil, useful or not, by their education.”[33]

Locke also wrote that “the little and almost insensible impressions on our tender infancies have very important and lasting consequences.”[34] He argued that the “associations of ideas” that one makes when young are more important than those made later because they are the foundation of the self: they are, put differently, what first mark the tabula rasa. In his Essay, in which is introduced both of these concepts, Locke warns against, for example, letting “a foolish maid” convince a child that “goblins and sprites” are associated with the night for “darkness shall ever afterwards bring with it those frightful ideas, and they shall be so joined, that he can no more bear the one than the other.”[35]

“Associationism”, as this theory would come to be called, exerted a powerful influence over eighteenth-century thought, particularly educational theory, as nearly every educational writer warned parents not to allow their children to develop negative associations. It also led to the development of psychology and other new disciplines with David Hartley‘s attempt to discover a biological mechanism for associationism in his Observations on Man (1749).

Religious beliefs

Some scholars have seen Locke’s political convictions as deriving from his religious beliefs.[36][37][38] Locke’s religious trajectory began in Calvinist trinitarianism, but by the time of the Reflections(1695) Locke was advocating not just Socinian views on tolerance but also Socinian Christology; with veiled denial of the pre-existence of Christ.[39] However Wainwright (Oxford, 1987) notes that in the posthumously published Paraphrase (1707) Locke’s interpretation of one verse, Ephesians 1:10, is markedly different from that of Socinians like Biddle, and may indicate that near the end of his life Locke returned nearer to an Arian position.[40]


Slave Trade

Published on Jul 16, 2013 10 Shocking Facts About the Slave Trade A $777 trillion trade network that affected millions, delve into 10 shocking facts about the slave trade in this video. Music = Navajo 3 by Jeremy Sherman Click to … Continue reading

Published on Jul 16, 2013

10 Shocking Facts About the Slave Trade

A $777 trillion trade network that affected millions, delve into 10 shocking facts about the slave trade in this video.

Music = Navajo 3 by Jeremy Sherman

Click to Subscribe.. http://bit.ly/WTVC4x


slavery and the Qatar 2022 World Cup

We are so excited to tell you that your campaigning over the last few days has well and truly paid off: Krishna Upadhyaya and Ghimire Gundev, the activists that disappeared in Qatar, have been released and will shortly be on their way home. We’ve heard from Krishna’s family in the last few hours and Krishna himself posted this status on Facebook last night: “Just released, will fly in two days’ time!”1

Your support was invaluable in bringing pressure to bear on the Qatari authorities and shining a light on the legitimate and important work of anti-slavery activists. Over 55,000 of you sent messages straight to the Qatari Minister of the Interior and Prime Minister to call on the authorities to investigate Krishna and Ghimire’s disappearance. 48 hours later we heard they were safe. Now we know they are coming home. This just goes to show what we can achieve when we speak out together with other anti-slavery activists and organisations around the world.

As someone that has taken action to end modern slavery in Qatar before, we know you know how important the work of researchers like Krishna and Ghimire is in uncovering the exploitation of migrant workers there. Thank you for continuing to support these efforts by calling for their release.

We’ll keep you updated as we hear more from Krishna and Ghimire when they return home, but we wanted to let you know as soon as possible that your campaigning has made a big difference in the fight to end modern slavery, once again.

In solidarity,

Jayde, Joanna, Fleur, Olly and the whole Walk Free team

P.S. Although it’s incredible news that Krishna and Ghimire are on their way home, the exploitation of migrant workers in Qatar that they were investigating continues. We’re currently planning the next stages of the campaign to end modern slavery fuelling the Qatar 2022 World Cup and will let you know soon the next way you can take action. Thank you again for your continued support on this issue.

http://gnrd.net/seemore.php?id=876


hsi-email-logo-2013.jpg    

Dear Friend,

“I am being followed by the police here. Looks like they will give me troubles now.”1

This is one of the ominous final messages Krishna Upadhyaya sent before he and his colleague Ghimire Gundev disappeared in Qatar four days ago — they haven’t been heard from since.

Krishna and Ghimire are British campaigners, working in Qatar on behalf of the Norwegian human rights organisation Global Network for Rights and Development (GNRD). They had been researching the plight of migrant labourers constructing facilities for Qatar’s 2022 World Cup, conducting interviews with Nepali labourers and investigating the terrible working conditions. 

On Sunday they vanished. Krishna was last in touch with a friend who has since said: “He was feeling unsafe to leave the hotel premises and according to him there were many police, most likely undercover ones, coming in very close to him every time he spoke to anyone on the phone. He expressed that he felt very insecure about what might happen when he left the hotel for the airport.”2

Krishna checked out of his hotel but did not board a planned flight back to Norway. Both are now feared to be detained by the Qatari security forces. Their whereabouts remain undisclosed by Qatari authorities despite repeated efforts by their families, and GNRD to obtain their location.3 In short — it’s feared that they may have been subjected to enforced disappearance.

Take action now: call for the immediate safe return of Krishna Upadhyaya and Ghimire Gundev.

As someone that has previously taken action to end modern slavery in Qatar fuelled by the Qatar 2022 World Cup, you know how vital the work of researchers like Krishna and Ghimire is. 

Krishna and Ghimire were working hard to keep the world’s attention on migrant workers trapped in conditions of modern slavery in Qatar. We cannot allow their mistreatment to continue. As fellow anti-slavery activists, we must take a stand and add to mounting pressure on the Qatari authorities to ensure Krishna and Ghimire are found. 

Please join us in calling on the Qatari authorities to act by:

  • Immediately investigating the whereabouts of Krishna and Ghimire and ensuring that they are allowed immediate access to their family members, a lawyer of their choice and to any medical treatment they may require. 
  • Ensuring that they are protected from all forms of torture or other ill-treatment.
  • Recognising that labour standards apply to all migrant workers, including the workers on Qatar 2022 World Cup infrastructure projects.

The next few hours are vital in finding and protecting Krishna and Ghimire — once you have taken action, please ask as many of your friends and family as possible to do the same.

In solidarity,

Jayde, Joanna, Fleur, Olly and the whole Walk Free team

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/british-human-rights-investigators-disappear-in-qatar-after-being-followed-by-plain-clothes-police-9709804.html
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/british-human-rights-investigators-disappear-in-qatar-after-being-followed-by-plain-clothes-police-9709804.html 
http://www.gnrd.net/seemore.php?id=855

Walk Free is a movement of people everywhere, fighting to end one of the world’s greatest evils: Modern slavery.


Today FIFA officials are meeting in Switzerland and we are running out of time to make our message heard. We need to act now to end the modern slavery trapping the people that are working to bring the world the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

Send a message to FIFA President Sepp Blatter demanding immediate action to tackle Qatar 2022 World Cup slavery.

This is where we’d typically go into a lot more detail on the situation but we’re only hours away from being out of time (we’ve included the email we sent you on Monday below for more background).

But did we want to take a couple of minutes to share Narayan Nepali’s story. Narayan is a migrant worker from Nepal who has since returned home after working in Qatar.

Mostly Nepalese are despised and we’re treated like slaves. Our passports were confiscated the day that we arrived.

I’d like to tell the government of Qatar to realise that migrant workers have played a significant role in Qatar’s development. They should therefore pay migrant workers better and treat them with more respect.”1

No one should be treated this way, especially to bring us a sporting event. FIFA must take responsibility for awarding the 2022 World Cup to a country with historic issues of forced labour and worker exploitation.

Please stand with workers in Qatar and call on FIFA to help the end modern slavery that is fuelling the 2022 World Cup.

In solidarity,

Debra, Jayde, Mika, Joanna, Amy & the Walk Free team

P.S. We have a crucial window of opportunity to influence FIFA as they hold their Executive Committee meeting RIGHT NOW. Send President Sepp Blatter a message to let him know we expect action against modern slavery in Qatar.

—————————————————————————
On Mon, Mar 17, 2014 at 13:27 AM, Debra Rosen wrote:

At the end of last year, our community was celebrating. 172,407 of us sent messages to FIFA calling on the body to tackle the modern slavery fuelling the 2022 World Cup construction projects in Qatar – and FIFA listened. Joseph ‘Sepp’ Blatter pledged that FIFA would work with the International Trade Union Confederation to improve the unacceptable situation for workers there and we welcomed his declaration that «fair working conditions with a lasting effect must be introduced quickly in Qatar».2

Unfortunately these words have not yet been followed by action.

Latest reports show that migrant workers from Nepal and India continue to die in record numbers on Qatari construction sites since the country won its World Cup bid.3 A new «Worker’s Charter» released by Qatar 2022 organising authorities last month has been acknowledged as a starting point, but falls short of the significant reforms needed to tackle the shocking conditions for migrant workers.4 And at a recent hearing at the European Parliament FIFA was far from reassuring, asking: «What do you expect of a football organisation? FIFA is not the lawmaker in Qatar.»5

We expect FIFA to take responsibility for its decision to award the 2022 World Cup to a country with historic issues of worker exploitation and forced labour. In just three days, top FIFA officials meet at their headquarters in Switzerland to discuss World Cup preparations: will you join us in demanding that ending modern slavery in Qatar be top of the agenda?

Call on FIFA President Sepp Blatter to take meaningful action against the modern slavery that is fuelling the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

The Walk Free community helped push FIFA to commit to end worker exploitation; now we have the chance to put that commitment into action. FIFA’s Executive Committee is meeting on Thursday and Friday – top representatives from national football associations around the world will be there and the press will be reporting developments closely, with all eyes on FIFA’s President Sepp Blatter. This is a significant opportunity to get our message heard.

The time has come for FIFA to act – Sepp Blatter must use his influence over World Cup organisers to ensure all future FIFA World Cups are slavery free and that includes Qatar as a top priority.

FIFA should:

  • Call for an end to the exploitative kafala system in its current form in Qatar, specifically by allowing workers to freely change jobs and leave the country without their employer’s permission.
  • Demand that fundamental labour rights are protected as a requirement for countries to be selected to host World Cups.
  • Call on the Qatar 2022 organising authorities to establish a complaints mechanism that allows migrant workers to report abuses and secure justice.
It’s time for FIFA to play ball and help end modern slavery in Qatar – add your voice now.

If you agree that no one should die or be enslaved to bring us “the beautiful game”, please take action and help spread the word by asking three of your friends to do the same.

Thank you in advance for your support,

Debra, Jayde, Mika, Joanna, Amy & the Walk Free team

P.S. Right now, workers in Qatar are living, working and dying in modern slavery to bring us the 2022 World Cup. Please take action to help stop this.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3NElpB1_X4 
www.fifa.com/worldcup/qatar2022/media/newsid=2227055
www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/18/qatar-world-cup-india-migrant-worker-deaths
http://edition.cnn.com/2014/02/11/sport/football/qatar-2022-workers-charter-football
www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/13/fifa-labour-conditions-qatar-world-cup 

Walk Free is a movement of people everywhere, fighting to end one of the world’s greatest evils: Modern slavery.


This morning, at one end of Kathmandu’s international airport, proud parents will bid farewell to their sons leaving Nepal in search of better jobs. But for the last month, the scene has been very different at the arrival terminal where wailing parents are met with the bodies of construction workers who died working in Qatar. Three to four bodies arriving daily.1
Is this just the beginning? Experts estimate over 1 million migrant workers could be at risk of modern slavery in Qatar between now and the 2022 World Cup; an average of twelve workers could die per week2 unless action is taken at this critical stage in the construction process.
We might have an opportunity to stop this crisis before it gets any worse… but time is short. Recent media coverage has caught the attention of international leaders and the Qatari government and most importantly – FIFA.3
Qatar was chosen to host the 2022 World Cup by FIFA. With their formidable leverage, FIFA could help ensure slavery is not tolerated in Qatar or in any country FIFA seeks partnership.
Click here to call on FIFA to help ensure construction for the Qatar World Cup does not use slave labour.
Reports of modern slavery from World Cup 2022 construction in the Qatari desert are chilling:

  • In a matter of weeks, 44 construction workers have died.
  • Thousands of Nepalese workers are being forced to work in 50C/122F degree heat with no access to food or water, not paid, passports held to prevent them from leaving.4
  • And just last week, investigative journalists were detained and questioned by Qatari authorities.5

Historically, there have been serious challenges to protecting migrant workers from modern slavery in Qatar. But with the prestige of hosting the World Cup on the line, there has never been a better chance to push the Qatari government for change.
This is our moment. If FIFA takes advantage of this opportunity for policy reform, workers could be protected from falling into the nightmare of modern slavery in Qatar for generations to come. This could be the break we have been waiting for in the entire region.
It all comes down to us – ask FIFA to join our call to help end slavery in Qatar.
We’re asking FIFA to:

  1. Call on the Qatari Supreme Committee for Qatar 2022 to update contracts to meet international labour standards.
  2. Include audit requirements for all contracts affiliated with FIFA sporting events that include large-scale construction projects for cases of modern slavery with the initial bidding process. 
  3. Publicly report the findings of audits for cases of modern slavery.

The tagline of FIFA’s World Cup is “Expect Amazing”. Tell FIFA you expect them to help end slavery in Qatar.
Thank you in advance for your support. Once you have taken action, please forward this message on to everyone you know. Together we have helped changed policy all over the world; together we can help end slavery in Qatar.
In solidarity,
Debra, Mich, Jess, Kamini, Sarah, Nick, Kate, Kyle and the Walk Free Team
[1] http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2013/sep/25/qatar-nepalese-workers-poverty-camps
[2] http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2013/sep/26/qatar-world-cup-migrant-workers-dead[3] Fédération Internationale de Football Association 
[4] http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/25/revealed-qatars-world-cup-slaves[5] http://www.policymic.com/articles/69343/qatar-world-cup-is-being-built-through-slave-labor-while-fifa-stays-silent

We are so excited to tell you that your campaigning over the last few days has well and truly paid off: Krishna Upadhyaya and Ghimire Gundev, the activists that disappeared in Qatar, have been released and will shortly be on their way home. We’ve heard from Krishna’s family in the last few hours and Krishna himself posted this status on Facebook last night: “Just released, will fly in two days' time!”1

Your support was invaluable in bringing pressure to bear on the Qatari authorities and shining a light on the legitimate and important work of anti-slavery activists. Over 55,000 of you sent messages straight to the Qatari Minister of the Interior and Prime Minister to call on the authorities to investigate Krishna and Ghimire’s disappearance. 48 hours later we heard they were safe. Now we know they are coming home. This just goes to show what we can achieve when we speak out together with other anti-slavery activists and organisations around the world.

As someone that has taken action to end modern slavery in Qatar before, we know you know how important the work of researchers like Krishna and Ghimire is in uncovering the exploitation of migrant workers there. Thank you for continuing to support these efforts by calling for their release.

We’ll keep you updated as we hear more from Krishna and Ghimire when they return home, but we wanted to let you know as soon as possible that your campaigning has made a big difference in the fight to end modern slavery, once again.

In solidarity,

Jayde, Joanna, Fleur, Olly and the whole Walk Free team

P.S. Although it’s incredible news that Krishna and Ghimire are on their way home, the exploitation of migrant workers in Qatar that they were investigating continues. We’re currently planning the next stages of the campaign to end modern slavery fuelling the Qatar 2022 World Cup and will let you know soon the next way you can take action. Thank you again for your continued support on this issue.

http://gnrd.net/seemore.php?id=876



hsi-email-logo-2013.jpg    
Dear Friend,

“I am being followed by the police here. Looks like they will give me troubles now.”1

This is one of the ominous final messages Krishna Upadhyaya sent before he and his colleague Ghimire Gundev disappeared in Qatar four days ago -- they haven’t been heard from since.

Krishna and Ghimire are British campaigners, working in Qatar on behalf of the Norwegian human rights organisation Global Network for Rights and Development (GNRD). They had been researching the plight of migrant labourers constructing facilities for Qatar’s 2022 World Cup, conducting interviews with Nepali labourers and investigating the terrible working conditions. 

On Sunday they vanished. Krishna was last in touch with a friend who has since said: “He was feeling unsafe to leave the hotel premises and according to him there were many police, most likely undercover ones, coming in very close to him every time he spoke to anyone on the phone. He expressed that he felt very insecure about what might happen when he left the hotel for the airport.”2

Krishna checked out of his hotel but did not board a planned flight back to Norway. Both are now feared to be detained by the Qatari security forces. Their whereabouts remain undisclosed by Qatari authorities despite repeated efforts by their families, and GNRD to obtain their location.3 In short -- it’s feared that they may have been subjected to enforced disappearance.

Take action now: call for the immediate safe return of Krishna Upadhyaya and Ghimire Gundev.

As someone that has previously taken action to end modern slavery in Qatar fuelled by the Qatar 2022 World Cup, you know how vital the work of researchers like Krishna and Ghimire is. 

Krishna and Ghimire were working hard to keep the world’s attention on migrant workers trapped in conditions of modern slavery in Qatar. We cannot allow their mistreatment to continue. As fellow anti-slavery activists, we must take a stand and add to mounting pressure on the Qatari authorities to ensure Krishna and Ghimire are found. 

Please join us in calling on the Qatari authorities to act by:
  • Immediately investigating the whereabouts of Krishna and Ghimire and ensuring that they are allowed immediate access to their family members, a lawyer of their choice and to any medical treatment they may require. 
  • Ensuring that they are protected from all forms of torture or other ill-treatment.
  • Recognising that labour standards apply to all migrant workers, including the workers on Qatar 2022 World Cup infrastructure projects.
The next few hours are vital in finding and protecting Krishna and Ghimire -- once you have taken action, please ask as many of your friends and family as possible to do the same.

In solidarity,

Jayde, Joanna, Fleur, Olly and the whole Walk Free team

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/british-human-rights-investigators-disappear-in-qatar-after-being-followed-by-plain-clothes-police-9709804.html
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/british-human-rights-investigators-disappear-in-qatar-after-being-followed-by-plain-clothes-police-9709804.html 
http://www.gnrd.net/seemore.php?id=855
Walk Free is a movement of people everywhere, fighting to end one of the world's greatest evils: Modern slavery.



Today FIFA officials are meeting in Switzerland and we are running out of time to make our message heard. We need to act now to end the modern slavery trapping the people that are working to bring the world the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

Send a message to FIFA President Sepp Blatter demanding immediate action to tackle Qatar 2022 World Cup slavery.

This is where we'd typically go into a lot more detail on the situation but we're only hours away from being out of time (we’ve included the email we sent you on Monday below for more background).

But did we want to take a couple of minutes to share Narayan Nepali's story. Narayan is a migrant worker from Nepal who has since returned home after working in Qatar.

Mostly Nepalese are despised and we’re treated like slaves. Our passports were confiscated the day that we arrived.

I’d like to tell the government of Qatar to realise that migrant workers have played a significant role in Qatar’s development. They should therefore pay migrant workers better and treat them with more respect.”1

No one should be treated this way, especially to bring us a sporting event. FIFA must take responsibility for awarding the 2022 World Cup to a country with historic issues of forced labour and worker exploitation.

Please stand with workers in Qatar and call on FIFA to help the end modern slavery that is fuelling the 2022 World Cup.

In solidarity,

Debra, Jayde, Mika, Joanna, Amy & the Walk Free team

P.S. We have a crucial window of opportunity to influence FIFA as they hold their Executive Committee meeting RIGHT NOW. Send President Sepp Blatter a message to let him know we expect action against modern slavery in Qatar.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------
On Mon, Mar 17, 2014 at 13:27 AM, Debra Rosen wrote:



At the end of last year, our community was celebrating. 172,407 of us sent messages to FIFA calling on the body to tackle the modern slavery fuelling the 2022 World Cup construction projects in Qatar – and FIFA listened. Joseph ‘Sepp’ Blatter pledged that FIFA would work with the International Trade Union Confederation to improve the unacceptable situation for workers there and we welcomed his declaration that "fair working conditions with a lasting effect must be introduced quickly in Qatar".2

Unfortunately these words have not yet been followed by action.

Latest reports show that migrant workers from Nepal and India continue to die in record numbers on Qatari construction sites since the country won its World Cup bid.3 A new "Worker’s Charter" released by Qatar 2022 organising authorities last month has been acknowledged as a starting point, but falls short of the significant reforms needed to tackle the shocking conditions for migrant workers.4 And at a recent hearing at the European Parliament FIFA was far from reassuring, asking: "What do you expect of a football organisation? FIFA is not the lawmaker in Qatar."5

We expect FIFA to take responsibility for its decision to award the 2022 World Cup to a country with historic issues of worker exploitation and forced labour. In just three days, top FIFA officials meet at their headquarters in Switzerland to discuss World Cup preparations: will you join us in demanding that ending modern slavery in Qatar be top of the agenda?

Call on FIFA President Sepp Blatter to take meaningful action against the modern slavery that is fuelling the Qatar 2022 World Cup.

The Walk Free community helped push FIFA to commit to end worker exploitation; now we have the chance to put that commitment into action. FIFA’s Executive Committee is meeting on Thursday and Friday – top representatives from national football associations around the world will be there and the press will be reporting developments closely, with all eyes on FIFA’s President Sepp Blatter. This is a significant opportunity to get our message heard.

The time has come for FIFA to act – Sepp Blatter must use his influence over World Cup organisers to ensure all future FIFA World Cups are slavery free and that includes Qatar as a top priority.

FIFA should:
  • Call for an end to the exploitative kafala system in its current form in Qatar, specifically by allowing workers to freely change jobs and leave the country without their employer’s permission.
  • Demand that fundamental labour rights are protected as a requirement for countries to be selected to host World Cups.
  • Call on the Qatar 2022 organising authorities to establish a complaints mechanism that allows migrant workers to report abuses and secure justice.
It’s time for FIFA to play ball and help end modern slavery in Qatar – add your voice now.

If you agree that no one should die or be enslaved to bring us “the beautiful game”, please take action and help spread the word by asking three of your friends to do the same.

Thank you in advance for your support,

Debra, Jayde, Mika, Joanna, Amy & the Walk Free team

P.S. Right now, workers in Qatar are living, working and dying in modern slavery to bring us the 2022 World Cup. Please take action to help stop this.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3NElpB1_X4 
www.fifa.com/worldcup/qatar2022/media/newsid=2227055
www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/18/qatar-world-cup-india-migrant-worker-deaths
http://edition.cnn.com/2014/02/11/sport/football/qatar-2022-workers-charter-football
www.theguardian.com/world/2014/feb/13/fifa-labour-conditions-qatar-world-cup 
Walk Free is a movement of people everywhere, fighting to end one of the world's greatest evils: Modern slavery.



This morning, at one end of Kathmandu’s international airport, proud parents will bid farewell to their sons leaving Nepal in search of better jobs. But for the last month, the scene has been very different at the arrival terminal where wailing parents are met with the bodies of construction workers who died working in Qatar. Three to four bodies arriving daily.1
Is this just the beginning? Experts estimate over 1 million migrant workers could be at risk of modern slavery in Qatar between now and the 2022 World Cup; an average of twelve workers could die per week2 unless action is taken at this critical stage in the construction process.
We might have an opportunity to stop this crisis before it gets any worse… but time is short. Recent media coverage has caught the attention of international leaders and the Qatari government and most importantly – FIFA.3
Qatar was chosen to host the 2022 World Cup by FIFA. With their formidable leverage, FIFA could help ensure slavery is not tolerated in Qatar or in any country FIFA seeks partnership.
Click here to call on FIFA to help ensure construction for the Qatar World Cup does not use slave labour.
Reports of modern slavery from World Cup 2022 construction in the Qatari desert are chilling:
  • In a matter of weeks, 44 construction workers have died.
  • Thousands of Nepalese workers are being forced to work in 50C/122F degree heat with no access to food or water, not paid, passports held to prevent them from leaving.4
  • And just last week, investigative journalists were detained and questioned by Qatari authorities.5
Historically, there have been serious challenges to protecting migrant workers from modern slavery in Qatar. But with the prestige of hosting the World Cup on the line, there has never been a better chance to push the Qatari government for change.
This is our moment. If FIFA takes advantage of this opportunity for policy reform, workers could be protected from falling into the nightmare of modern slavery in Qatar for generations to come. This could be the break we have been waiting for in the entire region.
It all comes down to us – ask FIFA to join our call to help end slavery in Qatar.
We’re asking FIFA to:
  1. Call on the Qatari Supreme Committee for Qatar 2022 to update contracts to meet international labour standards.
  2. Include audit requirements for all contracts affiliated with FIFA sporting events that include large-scale construction projects for cases of modern slavery with the initial bidding process. 
  3. Publicly report the findings of audits for cases of modern slavery.
The tagline of FIFA’s World Cup is “Expect Amazing”. Tell FIFA you expect them to help end slavery in Qatar.
Thank you in advance for your support. Once you have taken action, please forward this message on to everyone you know. Together we have helped changed policy all over the world; together we can help end slavery in Qatar.
In solidarity,
Debra, Mich, Jess, Kamini, Sarah, Nick, Kate, Kyle and the Walk Free Team
[1] http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2013/sep/25/qatar-nepalese-workers-poverty-camps
[2] http://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2013/sep/26/qatar-world-cup-migrant-workers-dead[3] Fédération Internationale de Football Association 
[4] http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/25/revealed-qatars-world-cup-slaves[5] http://www.policymic.com/articles/69343/qatar-world-cup-is-being-built-through-slave-labor-while-fifa-stays-silent

24 hours at a time with no overtime pay

According to a recent front-page article in Bloomberg Magazine, Wal-Mart hired a defense contractor, Lockheed Martin, to use military-grade cybersecurity techniques to monitor the social media accounts of labor organizers and Wal-Mart employees. Worse, on at least one occasion, the company’s global security team “began working with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces” to counter worker protests.1
Giant corporations shouldn’t be able to enlist the FBI’s help to crack down on workers simply asking for dignity and respect. So we are joining our friends at OUR Walmart to demand that the Department of Justice investigate the FBI’s relationship with Wal-Mart and whether the agency or company broke any laws.
Wal-Mart jobs pay so little that some workers go hungry. Most face irregular hours that make it impossible to raise parents or plan ahead, and have few benefits or health care coverage. All Wal-Mart employees are asking for is higher pay, safe working conditions, dependable schedules, and respect in the workplace.2 This is not terrorism, and there is no way the FBI should be involved.
The Bloomberg report reveals an intentional and long-running effort on the part of Wal-Mart executives to monitor current and former employees who are involved with OUR Walmart. Wal-Mart organized a “Delta team” of executives tasked with cracking down, staffed up its labor hotline, and hired Lockheed Martin, one of the biggest defense contractors in the world.3 Many of the employees monitored were later fired, potentially violating the law.4
In 2014, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a complaint against Wal-Mart, claiming that the company violated labor law in 14 states by engaging in retaliation against workers who organized for better pay and better lives.5 The NLRB investigation turned up thousands of documents, some of which detail Wal-Mart’s hiring of Lockheed Martin – and its unacceptable coordination with the FBI.6
OUR Walmart has submitted a letter to the Department of Justice demanding an investigation, and we need to show that hundreds of thousands of Americans stand with them.7
We do not know how often the FBI and Wal-Mart have teamed up. The documents unearthed by the NLRB also do not reveal the extent of FBI involvement in monitoring protesters who traveled by bus across the country to the retail behemoth’s Arkansas headquarters. It is also possible that Wal-Mart used information turned over by the FBI to illegally retaliate against employees.8
OUR Walmart and Wal-Mart workers have been at the forefront of the «Fight for $15» and their courageous stand has yielded results providing momentum for higher wages across the country. If the FBI’s anti-terrorism team is partnering with Wal-Mart, it may be working with other companies as well. We need to make sure the Justice Department doesn’t turn a blind eye any outrageous and dangerous abuse of authority targeting Wal-Mart workers.
Tell the Justice Department: Investigate reported FBI spying on Wal-Mart employees. Click below to sign the petition:
Thank you for speaking out,
Murshed Zaheed, Deputy Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Add your name:
Sign the petition ►
  1. Susan Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce,” Bloomberg, November 24, 2015.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. OUR Walmart, «Letters to the Department of Justice,» United4Respect.org, January 14, 2016.
  5. Amanda Becker, “U.S. labor board alleges Wal-Mart violated labor law in 14 states,” Reuters, January 15, 2014.
  6. Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce.”
  7. OUR Walmart, «Letters to the Department of Justice,» United4Respect.org, January 14, 2016.
  8. Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce.”

Started by: Ana Rosa Diaz, Breaux Bridge, Louisiana.
My name is Ana Rosa Diaz. I’m 40 years old and I have four children. I came to the United States on an H-2B guestworker visa from my home in Tamaulipas, Mexico. I work in a small town in Louisiana with other guestworkers, peeling crawfish for a company called C.J.’s Seafood, which sells 85% of its products to Walmart.
Our boss forces us to work up to 24 hours at a time with no overtime pay. No matter how fast we work, they scream and curse at us to make us work faster. Our supervisor threatens to beat us with a shovel to stop us from taking breaks.
We live in trailers across from the boss’s house, and we’re under surveillance all the time. The supervisors come into our trailers without warning, and they threaten to fire us if we leave after 9 p.m.
The supervisor also locked us in the plant so we couldn’t take breaks. One worker called 911. After that the boss rounded us up at 2:30 a.m., closed the door to keep the American employees out, and threatened our families.
He said, “As a friend I can be very good, but you don’t want to know me as an enemy. I have contacts with good people and bad people, and I know where all your families live. I can find you no matter where you hide.” We were terrified. 
We want to work. We need to support our families. But we also want to be treated like human beings.
We joined the National Guestworker Alliance and decided to go on strike. The boss refused to take back his threats against our families, so now we’re taking our demands to Walmart.
Walmart says it doesn’t allow forced labor by any of its suppliers. But Walmart is profiting from the forced labor we lived through right here in Louisiana. And now they’re trying to cover up what happened to us — while refusing even to speak with us.
Walmart needs to meet with us immediately, and to show its suppliers that it won’t tolerate forced labor. We’re demanding that Walmart:
1. Cancel its contract with C.J.’s Seafood to show that it won’t profit from forced labor in Louisiana.
2. Sit down with us, the striking workers, immediately as a first step toward a real investigation — rather than a cover-up.
3. Sign the NGA’s Guestworker Dignity Standards to prevent forced labor and guarantee civil and labor rights for guestworkers across the Walmart supply chain. 
Please sign and stand with us!
According to a recent front-page article in Bloomberg Magazine, Wal-Mart hired a defense contractor, Lockheed Martin, to use military-grade cybersecurity techniques to monitor the social media accounts of labor organizers and Wal-Mart employees. Worse, on at least one occasion, the company’s global security team “began working with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces” to counter worker protests.1
Giant corporations shouldn’t be able to enlist the FBI’s help to crack down on workers simply asking for dignity and respect. So we are joining our friends at OUR Walmart to demand that the Department of Justice investigate the FBI’s relationship with Wal-Mart and whether the agency or company broke any laws.
Wal-Mart jobs pay so little that some workers go hungry. Most face irregular hours that make it impossible to raise parents or plan ahead, and have few benefits or health care coverage. All Wal-Mart employees are asking for is higher pay, safe working conditions, dependable schedules, and respect in the workplace.2 This is not terrorism, and there is no way the FBI should be involved.
The Bloomberg report reveals an intentional and long-running effort on the part of Wal-Mart executives to monitor current and former employees who are involved with OUR Walmart. Wal-Mart organized a “Delta team” of executives tasked with cracking down, staffed up its labor hotline, and hired Lockheed Martin, one of the biggest defense contractors in the world.3 Many of the employees monitored were later fired, potentially violating the law.4
In 2014, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a complaint against Wal-Mart, claiming that the company violated labor law in 14 states by engaging in retaliation against workers who organized for better pay and better lives.5 The NLRB investigation turned up thousands of documents, some of which detail Wal-Mart’s hiring of Lockheed Martin – and its unacceptable coordination with the FBI.6
OUR Walmart has submitted a letter to the Department of Justice demanding an investigation, and we need to show that hundreds of thousands of Americans stand with them.7
We do not know how often the FBI and Wal-Mart have teamed up. The documents unearthed by the NLRB also do not reveal the extent of FBI involvement in monitoring protesters who traveled by bus across the country to the retail behemoth’s Arkansas headquarters. It is also possible that Wal-Mart used information turned over by the FBI to illegally retaliate against employees.8
OUR Walmart and Wal-Mart workers have been at the forefront of the "Fight for $15" and their courageous stand has yielded results providing momentum for higher wages across the country. If the FBI’s anti-terrorism team is partnering with Wal-Mart, it may be working with other companies as well. We need to make sure the Justice Department doesn’t turn a blind eye any outrageous and dangerous abuse of authority targeting Wal-Mart workers.
Tell the Justice Department: Investigate reported FBI spying on Wal-Mart employees. Click below to sign the petition:
Thank you for speaking out,
Murshed Zaheed, Deputy Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets
Add your name:
Sign the petition ?
  1. Susan Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce,” Bloomberg, November 24, 2015.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Ibid.
  4. OUR Walmart, "Letters to the Department of Justice," United4Respect.org, January 14, 2016.
  5. Amanda Becker, “U.S. labor board alleges Wal-Mart violated labor law in 14 states,” Reuters, January 15, 2014.
  6. Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce.”
  7. OUR Walmart, "Letters to the Department of Justice," United4Respect.org, January 14, 2016.
  8. Berfield, “How Walmart Keeps an Eye on Its Massive Workforce.”



Started by: Ana Rosa Diaz, Breaux Bridge, Louisiana.
My name is Ana Rosa Diaz. I'm 40 years old and I have four children. I came to the United States on an H-2B guestworker visa from my home in Tamaulipas, Mexico. I work in a small town in Louisiana with other guestworkers, peeling crawfish for a company called C.J.’s Seafood, which sells 85% of its products to Walmart.
Our boss forces us to work up to 24 hours at a time with no overtime pay. No matter how fast we work, they scream and curse at us to make us work faster. Our supervisor threatens to beat us with a shovel to stop us from taking breaks.
We live in trailers across from the boss's house, and we’re under surveillance all the time. The supervisors come into our trailers without warning, and they threaten to fire us if we leave after 9 p.m.
The supervisor also locked us in the plant so we couldn’t take breaks. One worker called 911. After that the boss rounded us up at 2:30 a.m., closed the door to keep the American employees out, and threatened our families.
He said, “As a friend I can be very good, but you don’t want to know me as an enemy. I have contacts with good people and bad people, and I know where all your families live. I can find you no matter where you hide.” We were terrified. 
We want to work. We need to support our families. But we also want to be treated like human beings.
We joined the National Guestworker Alliance and decided to go on strike. The boss refused to take back his threats against our families, so now we’re taking our demands to Walmart.
Walmart says it doesn't allow forced labor by any of its suppliers. But Walmart is profiting from the forced labor we lived through right here in Louisiana. And now they're trying to cover up what happened to us -- while refusing even to speak with us.
Walmart needs to meet with us immediately, and to show its suppliers that it won't tolerate forced labor. We’re demanding that Walmart:
1. Cancel its contract with C.J.’s Seafood to show that it won't profit from forced labor in Louisiana.
2. Sit down with us, the striking workers, immediately as a first step toward a real investigation -- rather than a cover-up.
3. Sign the NGA's Guestworker Dignity Standards to prevent forced labor and guarantee civil and labor rights for guestworkers across the Walmart supply chain. 
Please sign and stand with us!

Palestinian land

Reuters

By Jeffrey Heller

JERUSALEM, Aug 31 (Reuters) – Israel announced on Sunday a land appropriation in the occupied West Bank that an anti-settlement group termed the biggest in 30 years, drawing Palestinian condemnation and a U.S. rebuke.

Some 400 hectares (988 acres) in the Etzion Jewish settlement bloc near Bethlehem were declared «state land, on the instructions of the political echelon» by the military-run Civil Administration.


Edited time: June 28, 2013 12:43

Israeli settlers are up in arms about McDonald’s refusal to build an outlet in the West Bank, calling to boycott the company’s entire operations in Israel. The chain cited a policy of “staying out of occupied territories” with other businesses joining in.

McDonald’s stated that its refusal to operate in the West Bank «had always been the restaurant chain’s policy» and that its decision was not coordinated with McDonald’s headquarters in the US.

The co-owner of the new mall in the town of Ariel located in central West Bank admitted that some other international companies which were asked to open up businesses in the mall have also declined. He refused to specify which ones.

«The mediators told us that branches operating abroad and other companies holding rights in Israel for international brand names are worried about the potential negative response toward their businesses [from consumers] abroad if they open shops in the mall,» Tzahi Nahmias told Calcalist newspaper.

In response Israeli settlers have called to boycott McDonald’s altogether. The right-wing ‘My Israel’ Facebook page posted a “McDonald’s: I’m not loving it” sign in protest.


Edited time: October 28, 2013 07:48

The Palestinian Authority is ramping up its diplomatic efforts against Israeli settlements in the territories it occupied in the 1967 war. It has called on 50 countries around the world to freeze business dealings and withdraw investments.

In letters to countries in Latin America and Europe, as well as to South Africa, Australia, Japan and South Korea, the Palestinian Authority asked governments to put pressure on local companies and discourage any relations with the Israeli settlements, Muhammad Shtayyeh, a senior Palestinian official, told the Financial Times.

The messages also requested that Israeli companies with connections to the settlements are barred from doing business in those countries. Citizens of those countries should be advised to abandon the settlements, because staying there is illegal, the Palestinian Authority said.

The campaign for an economic boycott was also given a boost by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during his trip to Europe.

«I call on European companies and foreign companies doing business in the settlements to put an end to their activities,» he said following his meeting with European Council President Herman van Rompuy this week.

The campaign follows the EU’s decision in June to ban financial assistance to any Israeli organizations operating in the West Bank, East Jerusalem or the Golan Heights from 2014. The decision infuriated Israel and prevented the country from participating in the Horizon 2020 European scientific exchange program.

Also, in recent months, several individual members of the European Union, including the UK and the Netherlands, began to warn their companies against dealing with Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. This month Dutch infrastructure giant Royal HaskoningDHV announced the withdrawal from a wastewater treatment plant project in East Jerusalem, because the location is outside of the pre-1967 border of Israel.

There are currently more than 500,000 Israelis living in the settlements, which continue to be a point of bitter dispute with Palestinians. Many countries consider their existence unlawful and say they are a major stumbling block on the path toward a peaceful Middle East.

The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been actively encouraging development of the controversial settlements in defiance of foreign criticism, which comes even from Israel’s long-time ally the US.


The end of any potential ‘two state solution’ to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel’s far right wing Likud government, headed by Binyamin Netanyahu, built or committed to build thousands of new family domiciles for Israeli squatters in Palestinian territory. In the absence of a Palestinian state, Palestinians are doomed to statelessness and a lack of basic human rights, living under Israeli military occupation. The only other possibility, given that they live on territory unilaterally annexed by Israel, is for them ultimately to gain Israeli citizenship. In the meantime, Israel’s treatment of the occupied Palestinians looks even worse than Apartheid or racial segregation and systematic discrimination in South Africa before 1990. Israeli Apartheid is likely to result in the country being sanctioned and boycotted by the international community.

Juan Cole


Jordan Valley settlers farm private Palestinian land while owners are barred from entering

by on January 4, 2013

Palestinian owners barred from Jordan Valley land while Israeli farmers profit
Haaretz 3 Jan — Thai workers from the Israeli settlements are allowed across the border fence into the area, while the Palestinians are not; IDF spokesman also refuses to let Haaretz reporters tour the area Settlers in the Jordan Valley are farming more than 5,000 dunams (1,250 acres) of private Palestinian land located between the border fence and the actual border with Jordan. They received the land from the World Zionist Organization in the 1980s. The original owners, some of whom fled in 1967 and returned to the West Bank after the signing of the 1993 Oslo Accords and the 1994 peace treaty with Jordan, are still not allowed to access the land because of a military order preventing them from entering the border area.
link to www.haaretz.com


SodaStream wants to clean up its reputation by spending millions of dollars for a 30-second ad during the Super Bowl on February 3, 2013.

WHAT IS SODASTREAM?
SodaStream manufactures and distributes home carbonating devices and flavorings for soft drinks. Its products can be found in retail stores like Macy’s, Bed Bath and Beyond, Target, Costco, and others — including those listed here. The company’s main production site is in the illegal West Bank settlement of the Mishor Edomin Industrial Zone, where the company conceals the fact that its products are manufactured in a settlement by using ‘Made in Israel’ labels. As an Israeli settlement manufacturer, it exploits Palestinian land, resources, and labor. 
Companies that produce in the settlements enjoy several structural advantages, such as tax incentives, lax enforcement of regulations, as well as additional governmental support. Despite SodaStream’s location in the West Bank, goods produced here do not serve the local population; instead, 65% of goods are shipped elsewhere and taxes and profits go to support the Israeli economy—not Palestinians. 
Click here to visit the excellent Global Exchange site about SodaStream.
Click here for a report on SodaStream.
Click here to see some of their arguments and counter-arguments.

Reuters

By Jeffrey Heller

JERUSALEM, Aug 31 (Reuters) - Israel announced on Sunday a land appropriation in the occupied West Bank that an anti-settlement group termed the biggest in 30 years, drawing Palestinian condemnation and a U.S. rebuke.

Some 400 hectares (988 acres) in the Etzion Jewish settlement bloc near Bethlehem were declared "state land, on the instructions of the political echelon" by the military-run Civil Administration.



Edited time: June 28, 2013 12:43

Israeli settlers are up in arms about McDonald’s refusal to build an outlet in the West Bank, calling to boycott the company’s entire operations in Israel. The chain cited a policy of “staying out of occupied territories” with other businesses joining in.

McDonald's stated that its refusal to operate in the West Bank "had always been the restaurant chain's policy" and that its decision was not coordinated with McDonald’s headquarters in the US.

The co-owner of the new mall in the town of Ariel located in central West Bank admitted that some other international companies which were asked to open up businesses in the mall have also declined. He refused to specify which ones.

"The mediators told us that branches operating abroad and other companies holding rights in Israel for international brand names are worried about the potential negative response toward their businesses [from consumers] abroad if they open shops in the mall," Tzahi Nahmias told Calcalist newspaper.

In response Israeli settlers have called to boycott McDonald’s altogether. The right-wing ‘My Israel’ Facebook page posted a “McDonald’s: I’m not loving it” sign in protest.



Edited time: October 28, 2013 07:48
The Palestinian Authority is ramping up its diplomatic efforts against Israeli settlements in the territories it occupied in the 1967 war. It has called on 50 countries around the world to freeze business dealings and withdraw investments.

In letters to countries in Latin America and Europe, as well as to South Africa, Australia, Japan and South Korea, the Palestinian Authority asked governments to put pressure on local companies and discourage any relations with the Israeli settlements, Muhammad Shtayyeh, a senior Palestinian official, told the Financial Times.

The messages also requested that Israeli companies with connections to the settlements are barred from doing business in those countries. Citizens of those countries should be advised to abandon the settlements, because staying there is illegal, the Palestinian Authority said.

The campaign for an economic boycott was also given a boost by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during his trip to Europe.

"I call on European companies and foreign companies doing business in the settlements to put an end to their activities," he said following his meeting with European Council President Herman van Rompuy this week.

The campaign follows the EU’s decision in June to ban financial assistance to any Israeli organizations operating in the West Bank, East Jerusalem or the Golan Heights from 2014. The decision infuriated Israel and prevented the country from participating in the Horizon 2020 European scientific exchange program.

Also, in recent months, several individual members of the European Union, including the UK and the Netherlands, began to warn their companies against dealing with Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. This month Dutch infrastructure giant Royal HaskoningDHV announced the withdrawal from a wastewater treatment plant project in East Jerusalem, because the location is outside of the pre-1967 border of Israel.

There are currently more than 500,000 Israelis living in the settlements, which continue to be a point of bitter dispute with Palestinians. Many countries consider their existence unlawful and say they are a major stumbling block on the path toward a peaceful Middle East.

The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been actively encouraging development of the controversial settlements in defiance of foreign criticism, which comes even from Israel’s long-time ally the US.



The end of any potential ‘two state solution’ to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel’s far right wing Likud government, headed by Binyamin Netanyahu, built or committed to build thousands of new family domiciles for Israeli squatters in Palestinian territory. In the absence of a Palestinian state, Palestinians are doomed to statelessness and a lack of basic human rights, living under Israeli military occupation. The only other possibility, given that they live on territory unilaterally annexed by Israel, is for them ultimately to gain Israeli citizenship. In the meantime, Israel’s treatment of the occupied Palestinians looks even worse than Apartheid or racial segregation and systematic discrimination in South Africa before 1990. Israeli Apartheid is likely to result in the country being sanctioned and boycotted by the international community.
Juan Cole




Jordan Valley settlers farm private Palestinian land while owners are barred from entering

Palestinian owners barred from Jordan Valley land while Israeli farmers profit
Haaretz 3 Jan -- Thai workers from the Israeli settlements are allowed across the border fence into the area, while the Palestinians are not; IDF spokesman also refuses to let Haaretz reporters tour the area -- Settlers in the Jordan Valley are farming more than 5,000 dunams (1,250 acres) of private Palestinian land located between the border fence and the actual border with Jordan. They received the land from the World Zionist Organization in the 1980s. The original owners, some of whom fled in 1967 and returned to the West Bank after the signing of the 1993 Oslo Accords and the 1994 peace treaty with Jordan, are still not allowed to access the land because of a military order preventing them from entering the border area.
link to www.haaretz.com



SodaStream wants to clean up its reputation by spending millions of dollars for a 30-second ad during the Super Bowl on February 3, 2013.



WHAT IS SODASTREAM?
SodaStream manufactures and distributes home carbonating devices and flavorings for soft drinks. Its products can be found in retail stores like Macy’s, Bed Bath and Beyond, Target, Costco, and others -- including those listed here. The company’s main production site is in the illegal West Bank settlement of the Mishor Edomin Industrial Zone, where the company conceals the fact that its products are manufactured in a settlement by using ‘Made in Israel’ labels. As an Israeli settlement manufacturer, it exploits Palestinian land, resources, and labor. 
Companies that produce in the settlements enjoy several structural advantages, such as tax incentives, lax enforcement of regulations, as well as additional governmental support. Despite SodaStream’s location in the West Bank, goods produced here do not serve the local population; instead, 65% of goods are shipped elsewhere and taxes and profits go to support the Israeli economy---not Palestinians. 
Click here to visit the excellent Global Exchange site about SodaStream.
Click here for a report on SodaStream.
Click here to see some of their arguments and counter-arguments.

Saudi human trafficking

The case of Saudi Princess Meshael Alayban, accused of human trafficking in the U.S., has caused a stir throughout the world. But do you know how the story was uncovered?
A few weeks ago, the victim, identified as ‘Jane Doe,’ escaped Alayban’s home where she alleges she was forced to work 16 hours a day, 7 days a week; her passport held by Alayban to prevent escape. Jane Doe then flagged down a bus, explained her situation to another passenger who helped her phone police. When the police went to investigate, they found four other women at the home claiming to be in the same situation1.
Modern slavery is a crime that survives hidden from the view of the public, but occasionally, it’s there, right in front of us. It could happen overtly – a woman escaping a home in which she was trapped or a boy summoning the courage to trust a stranger – or a more subtle scene in an airport where something just doesn’t look right. The bottom line is, at any moment, a person trapped in the nightmare of modern slavery could be trying to get our attention and we all need to be ready to help.
Hours ago, Princess Alayban was supposed to face charges of human trafficking in a California court but didn’t show up. Annoyed, the judge moved her court date.

Send a message of solidarity that we all stand with the passenger on the bus who took action to protect another by ensuring millions of people know how to spot a problem AND what to do.

The case of Saudi Princess Meshael Alayban, accused of human trafficking in the U.S., has caused a stir throughout the world. But do you know how the story was uncovered?
A few weeks ago, the victim, identified as 'Jane Doe,' escaped Alayban’s home where she alleges she was forced to work 16 hours a day, 7 days a week; her passport held by Alayban to prevent escape. Jane Doe then flagged down a bus, explained her situation to another passenger who helped her phone police. When the police went to investigate, they found four other women at the home claiming to be in the same situation1.
Modern slavery is a crime that survives hidden from the view of the public, but occasionally, it’s there, right in front of us. It could happen overtly – a woman escaping a home in which she was trapped or a boy summoning the courage to trust a stranger – or a more subtle scene in an airport where something just doesn’t look right. The bottom line is, at any moment, a person trapped in the nightmare of modern slavery could be trying to get our attention and we all need to be ready to help.
Hours ago, Princess Alayban was supposed to face charges of human trafficking in a California court but didn't show up. Annoyed, the judge moved her court date.

Send a message of solidarity that we all stand with the passenger on the bus who took action to protect another by ensuring millions of people know how to spot a problem AND what to do.

Drawings by Pawel Kuczynski

These drawings are from Polish artist Pawel Kuczynski. Pawel was born in 1976 in Szczecin. He graduated the Fine Arts Academy in Poznan with specialization in graphics. He is famous for his satirical illustrations that should shock you

Click to view slideshow.

These drawings are from Polish artist Pawel Kuczynski.

Pawel was born in 1976 in Szczecin. He graduated the Fine Arts Academy in Poznan with specialization in graphics.

He is famous for his satirical illustrations that should shock you