With the reauthorization of Trafficking Victims' Protection Act (TVPA) in 2005, the Department of Labor was mandated by Congress to compile a list of goods produced by forced labor or child labor and the countries where they were made. It is now four years later and the department has yet to release this list to the public.
The list is designed to identify problem products (seafood, steel, textiles, etc.) and the countries where they are produced. Its release would provide consumers and shareholders with leverage to fight slavery worldwide. Empowered with this information, individuals could use their buying power to hold companies accountable and pressure them to rid their supply chains of slave labor.
In December, the newest reauthorization of the TVPA, the William Wilberforce Reauthorization Act, gave the department until the end of this year to comply with the mandate. However, due to the foot-dragging of the last adminstration's Secretary of Labor, the list is already long overdue. We must hold this administration to its promise of transparency, and demand the release of this list to the public now.
Let the Department of Labor know that we will not wait any longer, and urge them to take the steps toward eliminating modern-day slavery. Please take action by signing and adding your own message below (as individualized letters are more effective than form letters), and sending it to Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis today.
Slavery is a violation of who we are and what we stand for. These are human lives, not mere links in a supply chain. They do not deserve to be ignored.
In December, the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act gave your department until the end of this year to comply with the mandate. As a conscious consumer, I strongly encourage you not to wait until then. Make this list available immediately. Do not make the same mistake as your predecessor by withholding this information from the public any longer.
Businesses and the countries in which they operate need to be held accountable for their actions. The release of this list would begin to put pressure on companies to make sure they do not use slave labor in their supply chains, and enable sectors free of slavery to be rewarded by informed consumers.
Thank you for your leadership and understanding of the gravity of the issue. I look forward to seeing your Department take initiative in the fight against modern-day slavery.
A concerned but hopeful consumer,