Defining Freedom can be difficult for anyone, but what does it mean for someone who has experienced no freedom? Someone who has been kept captive with no freedom of choice? So to find out, in the article we ask some of the survivors in our Freedom Hub Survivor School, “what is freedom”?
“Freedom means you are unobstructed in living your life as you choose. Anything less is a form of slavery” says Wayne Dyer.
Sadly, not everyone is free from slavery, even today.
Across the globe and in Australia, myriads of people experience Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. “The Global Slavery Index 2018 estimates that on any given day in 2016, there were 15,000 living in conditions of Modern slavery in Australia, a prevalence of 0.6 victims of Modern Slavery for every thousand people in the country” (Global Slavery Index-Australia).
Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking are no joke. They are inextricably linked to systemic and structural injustices that increase the likelihood of servitude, forced labour, debt bondage, unlawful recruitment for labour or services, forced marriage and child labour in society.
Survivor Narratives on Freedom
Slavery survivors are people who have experienced Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. Interestingly, there are numerous survivor narratives on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking on the web; however, there are very limited slavery survivor narratives on ‘freedom’.
So we thought we would ask! The Freedom Hub interviewed some of our survivors and here is what they said:
“Freedom means I can live freely and have friends”- Female Survivor, 32 years old.
“I think Freedom means that my life is stable”-Female survivor, 30 years old.
“It means I can be me. I can have everything in life I want”- Female survivor, 27 years old.
“Freedom is everything. It means that I have control over my life, and I am able to do all what I like”- Female survivor, 35 years old.
“Freedom means that I am free to study and work where I want. It also means that I have the comfort to do anything in life” – Female survivor, 26 years old.
“I never knew what freedom was until I joined The Freedom Hub. Before I felt like I was in a box. Now I am open. I am free to learn and speak English. I am free to learn how to use computers. Also, I am free to learn how to swim. Most importantly, I am free to meet new people and make new friends. I owe it all to The Freedom Hub. I was not able to learn and do all that before but can now do it as I’m free!”-Female Survivor, 29 years old.
These survivor narratives reflect empowerment, strength and resilience. Contrasted with disempowerment, weakness and vulnerability that usually continues to plague the minds of innocent victims of Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.
It is our role and responsibility as good and law-abiding citizens of nations to stand together in the fight to end vicious social issues that suppress one’s freedom, liberty and happiness.
Final Thoughts on Modern-Day Slavery in Modern Australia…
Many survivors across the globe do not know when they will be free from servitude, forced labour, debt bondage, unlawful recruitment for labour or services, forced marriage and child labour. So there needs to be global consensus and collective action against Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. As a response, this 16days of Freedom Campaign is aimed at raising the voice of women and girls who have been subjected to the abuse and violence that comes with modern day slavery. The more people who share these blogs and talk about this issue, the more awareness is raised. Awareness means more victims will be identified. Awareness means funding will be put into solving this crime in our country. It also means we can be the voice for those with none.
We could be and should be the first country in the world to have no slavery. But while people don’t know it is happening, people will remain captives. Women and girls will continue to abused. Gender inequality will win. Let’s take action.
Written by: Pareena Khubani (Freedom Hub Intern)
Tomorrows Article: An Australian Story on Freedom from Forced Marriage
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ABOUT 16 DAYS OF FREEDOM
Thank you for your part in this 16 Days of Freedom. We cannot change culture without awareness so please share this post with your friends. Here are the hashtags for your share: #16daysoffreedom #freedomhuborg #womensrights #orangetheworld
16 Days of Freedom is a campaign we are running to align with the UN awareness campaign United Nations’ UNiTE campaign on gender violence against women and girls. As a result we are focussing on abuse of women and girls through the lens of modern slavery.
So for 16 days we will post a story to highlight the issue. To end the 16days we invite you to come to or host a Festive High Tea for Human Rights. These will be held on or near the UN Human Rights Day on the 10th December.
You can join our High Tea in Waterloo, Sydney, by clicking HERE.
Or you can Host your own High Tea by registering HERE and we will send you an information and fact sheet to read or distribute to your guests.
THANK YOU FOR TAKING THE TIME TO READ OUR BLOG (Please review it or share it with others).
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