United Nations, New York, USA, July 26, 2018 – Princess Eugenie of York speak about her work as Director of the Anti-Slavery Collective During the NEXUS Meeting today at the UN Headquarters in New York City.
Photos: Luiz Rampelotto/EuropaNewswire
By Kurt Wheelock
UNITED NATIONS — When British Princess Eugenie and her sister Princess Beatrice came to the UN on July 26 it was on a deadly serious subject, ending modern slavery. She spoke at the NEXUS 8th Annual Global Summit at the UN. Princess Eugenie’s commitment to the issue began on a 2013 trip to India with her mother, Sarah, Duchess of York, which included a visit to charity Women’s Interlink. She said that modern slavery is “on our own doorstep when you think it is a million miles away. I was completely astounded by the victims. These people were strong, happy… these girls really showed me how to grab life and appreciate things. If they can do it, after what they’ve been through, it’s a huge lesson for people to learn. They are courageous, and everyone who works within modern slavery and who tries to fight for people who don’t have a voice, are courageous.”
After that trip Princess Eugenie became involved with organizations like the Salvation Army, saying that “I think raising awareness is such a huge part of modern slavery because no one knows it’s going on as much as it is. There are more slaves now than there were in William Wilberforce’s time and I think it’s such a huge problem, but everyone can do their part to try and effect change.”
NEXUS has a Working Group on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery which it launched in February 2014 in New York City with the goal of exploring the issue of modern slavery and human trafficking in an effort to leverage the unique skills, talents, and access of NEXUS members in order to change domestic and international policy, promote partnerships among and between civil society and governments, explore options for social impact investments in this space, and end the plight of slaves and human trafficking victims.
According to the US State Department, Modern Slavery is a crime that includes forced and bonded labor, migrant labor debt bondage, sex or human trafficking, involuntary domestic servitude and child soldiering. Human Trafficking, or the trafficking of persons, is when someone obtains or holds a person in compelled service. According to United Nations, human trafficking is a form of modern slavery that subjects children, women, and men to force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor.
The non-profit group Anti-Slavery is more specific, identifying forms of modern slavery including Forced labor – any work or services which people are forced to do against their will under the threat of some form of punishment.
Debt bondage or bonded labor – the world’s most widespread form of slavery, when people borrow money they cannot repay and are required to work to pay off the debt, then losing control over the conditions of both their employment and the debt.
Human trafficking– involves transporting, recruiting or harboring people for the purpose of exploitation, using violence, threats or coercion.
Descent-based slavery – where people are born into slavery because their ancestors were captured and enslaved; they remain in slavery by descent.
Child slavery – many people often confuse child slavery with child labor, but it is much worse. Whilst child labor is harmful for children and hinders their education and development, child slavery occurs when a child is exploited for someone else’s gain. It can include child trafficking, child soldiers, child marriage and child domestic slavery.
Forced and early marriage – when someone is married against their will and cannot leave the marriage. Most child marriages can be considered slavery.
In April this year Princess Eugenie and Julia de Boinville joined forces to launch this Anti-Slavery Collective, which aims to end modern slavery. Launching the project at the Change Makers Summit in London, Princess Eugenie said: “We will be starting an Anti-Slavery Collective which is all about raising awareness of global slavery. Creating a platform where everyone works together, shares data and incredible stories.” And that’s what she did at the UN on July 26.