As the current issue of slavery in Libya gets more attention, the need for global help increases. In an article published by CNN last week, they pose the question "where is the world?" Libya is not in a state where they can handle this by themselves.
According to a statement by United Nations-backed Libyan Government of National Accord, or GNA, Libya "is going through difficult times which affected its own citizens as well. It is, therefore, not fair to assume responsibility for the consequences of this immigration, which everyone unanimously agreed that addressing this phenomenon exceeds the national capacities."
CNN also reports that thousands of migrants pass through Libya in hopes of making it to Europe. Oftentimes, they become indebted to smugglers who then auction them off.
The issue of slave trade is obviously a big one that isn't easily eradicated. However as people continue to shine a light on the ugly truth, the concern becomes one of the things that can aid in abolishment. As Bustle has previously reported, here are a few things that we can do to help right where we are.
1. Call Out The U.N., make sure they direct their efforts toward this cause
#Slavery & #HumanTrafficking shouldn't be happening. African migrants & #refugees are victims of #SlaveTrade in #Libya. There needs to be mass #media coverage. World leaders know about this & remain silent. Where's the #UnitedNations?#Africa #HumanRightshttps://t.co/BamR4UcLQF— Abdul Hamid Faruki (@TjpAbdul) November 27, 2017
First and foremost, you should advocate for the U.S. and the United Nations to take a strong stance when it comes to investigating, condemning, and ending the Libyan slave trade. We have to keep the momentum for this issue alive. If you can, possibly contact Ambassador Haley to encourage her to continue to prioritize the slave trade issue within the United Nations system.
2. Support the International Organization For Migration (IOM).
Our latest newsletter covering the period from 24 October to 5 November is now out! If you would like to know more about our activities in #Libya, check this link: https://t.co/cH8tEtpRZd pic.twitter.com/jDwjDbWzmf— IOM Libya (@IOM_Libya) November 14, 2017
The IOM is working in Libya to protect migrants' human rights and to prevent them from being trafficked into servitude by smugglers. The organization is doing so by pushing Libyan authorities to develop alternatives to migrant detention centers (where migrants are often exploited and abused) and demanding that authorities hold those who abuse or enslave migrants accountable for their actions.
3. Fight the "root causes" of slavery and trafficking
You can help stop trafficking and slavery by donating to development organizations that help refugees (like the United Nations Refugee Agency) or to organizations that work on country-wide aid and development, either in Libya or in the countries from which migrants are fleeing.
4. Hold social media companies accountable
According to the IOM, smugglers have previously used Facebook Live to broadcast videos of imprisoned migrants in Libya to send these videos to migrants' family members as a way of extorting money for their release. The IOM is asking social media companies to ban the use of their services for the sharing of these types of videos. You can also write to Facebook, and have this stopped.
5. Donate to global anti-slavery companies
#GivingTuesday is TOMORROW! #GiveToFreedom to support our work to ensure that communities have the resources they need to defend themselves against trafficking. This year our goal is $15,000. We can't wait to see all the change that will be possible through your help! pic.twitter.com/hQohGGOT72— Free the Slaves (@FreetheSlaves) November 27, 2017
6. Help raise awareness!
Researchers estimate 40 million are enslaved around the world generating about $150 in illegal profits. This Giving Tuesday season, discuss your role in ending slavery w/ friends. Get involved by giving to FTS this #GivingTuesday. #GiveToFreedom here https://t.co/I4IbYHc9B4 pic.twitter.com/fsCvN55Beb— Free the Slaves (@FreetheSlaves) November 20, 2017
One of the biggest and easiest methods of ending something is to get it in front of as many eyes as possible. Free the Slaves provides a complete list of ways you can help raise awareness.
7. Shop slave free
Sometimes we contribute to the issue and we don't even realize it. This slave-free shopping guide from End Slavery Now identifies companies which actively seek to prevent the use of slave labor in their supply chains.
If there are other ways to help Libya that we missed, please share below.