This post was written by Dame Ba, Mauritania Program Coordinator
Free the Slaves is working hard trying to change the conditions that allow slavery to persist. That’s why we’re continuing our work in Mauritania to promote social inclusion and prevent the marginalization of the Haratin Community. Since 2021, FTS has focused on educating and supporting journalists, promoting human rights, and encouraging civil society to effectively report on and respond to cases of social exclusion. Free the Slaves’ goal is to champion the rights of the marginalized Haratin communities. Here’s how we’ve been doing just that.
Recently, FTS has been able to expand work in Mauritania with our longstanding partner, Association de Lutte Contre la Dépendance (ALCD). We’re working to engage government agencies in Mauritania and hold them accountable for its commitment as a pathfinder country. Not only do we have the support of the ALCD, but also a new partnership with the Initiative de Resurgence du Movement Abolitionniste (IRA). The IRA will help FTS educate and empower journalists and human rights activists to continue holding the government of Mauritania accountable.
FTS and IRA recently hosted a training session for journalists, International Labor Organisation representatives, officers from the U.S. embassy, and the U.N. High Commissioner of Human Rights. During the 3-day practical training sessions, journalists were equipped with practical skills to effectively cover cases of modern slavery in Mauritania. Not only did we explain how to hold government officials accountable, but we also discussed how journalists can amplify the voices of minority and marginalized groups through inclusive strategies.
Lastly, our partners have continued working to build the capacity of government agencies through the Community Liberation Initiative – Rule of Law Training. FTS and ALCD hosted multiple government officials during the most recent Rule of Law Training where participants were taken through Mauritania’s systems of laws, institutions, and their commitment to delivering on the universal principles of human rights.
Our plans are simple: educate and liberate. Our strategy to train journalists and inform government officials will help high-risk areas build resilience to modern slavery. By educating journalists and government agencies, we’re working to end modern slavery.