Lincoln inspiring today's anti-slave activists
February 27th, 2013
01:14 PM ET

Lincoln inspiring today's anti-slave activists

In his acceptance speech after winning the 2013 Oscar for best actor Daniel Day-Lewis acknowledged "the mysteriously beautiful mind, body and spirit of Abraham Lincoln."

There was applause from the audience. It was a celebration of Day-Lewis's talent and performance as the 16th U.S. president. But in a sublime way, it was also a celebration of Lincoln himself - his life, his words and his actions, most notably his fight against slavery.

One organization is trying to connect the historical Lincoln with the issue of modern day slavery.

Lincoln fought to end slavery 150 years ago. But how can we follow his lead to put this practice to an end for good? FULL POST

February 21st, 2013
10:59 AM ET

Cotton exporters using child labor

Conscientious consumers are credited with driving change in forced child labor practices inside one of the world's most repressive regimes: Uzbekistan.

But while progress has been made, the fight is far from over.

"Uzbekistan has one of the most atrocious human rights records of any nation in the world," said Steve Swerdlow, Central Asia research for Human Rights Watch.  "It's longstanding President (Islam Karimov) has been in power for 23 years and he crushes dissent."

Hundreds of thousands of students in Uzbekistan are pulled from their classrooms every fall and ordered into the fields to pick cotton for little or no pay.

A mother was recorded on video saying that if she didn’t send her child to pick cotton, she faced a fine equivalent to two weeks pay.  Rights groups say students are also threatened with losing their seat in the classroom. FULL POST

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Topics: Business • In The News
February 21st, 2013
10:29 AM ET

Germans take up Sinai trafficking

Germany's parliament has taken on debating human trafficking in Sinai in part due to CNN reporting from the region.

German MP Annette Groth says it is time for Berlin to use its economic power to pressure Egyptian authorities.

Human rights groups estimate that thousands of African migrants have perished trying to make it to Israel via the Sinai. FULL POST

February 18th, 2013
10:45 AM ET

Mozambique or Bust: Watch it now

CNN’s Freedom Project followed a small group who came up with a bright idea to help former sex slaves - and the people who helped them realize their dream.

Their idea – ship unwanted bras from the U.S. to Mozambique where they can be sold in markets and help provide the rescued slaves with a wage.

Across the U.S. women have discarded bras in bedroom draws. In Mozambique the same item is a luxury. As the idea took off and the group hit problems shipping their cargo, others stepped in to help.

Now you can watch the entire “Mozambique or Bust” documentary, narrated by Mira Sorvino, an Oscar winner and goodwill ambassador to combat human trafficking for the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime online here in three parts. FULL POST

Lincoln's chair helping today's slaves
This chair is part of an Abraham Lincoln collection up for auction.
February 15th, 2013
01:59 PM ET

Lincoln's chair helping today's slaves

Looking to add a conversation piece to your Oscar viewing party?

How about the chair in which Abraham Lincoln was reputedly sitting when he received the news he'd been nominated as the Republican candidate for president.

It's the star attraction in a collection of more than 50 historical documents, rare books, images and artifacts related to the 16th President of the United States currently up for bid on eBay.

Ten percent of the final sale price from the auction will support the U.S.-based international non-profit, Free the Slaves, which works with local communities across the globe to end modern-day forms of slavery. FULL POST

Bras saving lives
February 12th, 2013
07:25 PM ET

Bras offer lifeline to rescued slaves

Editor’s note: Watch “Mozambique or Bust” on CNN International: Friday, February 15 at 1630 GMT, Saturday Feb. 16 at 1400 GMT and 2130 GMT, and repeats Sunday until Wednesday.

Denver, Colorado (CNN) – Tashina was trafficked for sex when she was 15-years-old. Ofelia, when she was 12.

Tashina finds it helpful to talk about it. “We lived in darkness,” she said. For Ofelia, talking about the past is too painful. She just winds up crying.

But both women smile broadly as they talk about their future. A future filled with promise and hope, thanks to the kindness of a complete stranger half a world away from their home in Mozambique.

Kimba Langas is a college-educated, stay-at-home mom in suburban Denver, Colorado. She says she grew up in a middle class family with loving parents, never wanting for anything.

“I am fortunate,” Langas said. “I was born at the right time, in the right country, under the right circumstances, so I've had many privileges as a woman growing up in the United States. I've had just about every opportunity I could want.”

Her life could not be more different from those of Tashina and Ofelia. And yet, today these three women are connected in a most unusual way. FULL POST

Bras saving lives
February 12th, 2013
07:18 PM ET

Oscar winner Mira Sorvino: We can all fight slavery

Editor’s Note: Mira Sorvino is an Oscar-winning actress and goodwill ambassador to combat human trafficking for the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime which tackles human trafficking. She narrated CNN’s documentary “Mozambique or Bust” which first airs on CNN International on Friday at 1630 GMT and is repeated at various times through next week.

(CNN) - I am thrilled about the message from “Mozambique or Bust” - empowerment and hope, to both would-be abolitionists and those longing to escape a life of bondage.

This is the story of Kimba Langas and Pastor Dave, with no initial resources to speak of besides their ardent wish to help trafficking survivors, creating a non-profit that provides a way for girls rescued from sexual trafficking in Mozambique to build a sustainable livelihood for themselves.

It highlights the power of faith, ingenuity and the generosity of like-minded strangers who only needed to hear of the plan to pool their diverse resources and get involved. FULL POST

February 12th, 2013
07:14 PM ET

Mozambique or Bust: How you can help

Editor’s note: Watch “Mozambique or Bust” on CNN international Friday, February 15 at 1630 GMT, Saturday Feb. 16 at 1400GMT and 2130 GMT, and repeats Sunday through Wednesday.

There are several ways you can help the people featured in the CNN Freedom Project documentary, Mozambique or Bust, narrated by Mira Sorvino, an Oscar-winning actress and goodwill ambassador to combat human trafficking for the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime which tackles human trafficking. She says everyone can play a part in the fight against human trafficking.

There's more information at Free the Girls about the program that provides donated bras for sex trafficking survivors. The organization currently supports women in Mozambique, but plans to start programs in four other countries later this year.

If you are interested in Mozambique specifically, you can reach out to Project Purpose.

You can also learn more about Truckers Against Trafficking, a group educating drivers about human trafficking. On the TAT website, there's also a training video that shows drivers how to recognize victims on the road.

And there's more about Mira Sorvino’s work for the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and the fight against human trafficking.