Competing To End Labor Trafficking In Global Supply Chains: With Technology

                                          Photo: Markus Schreiber: migrants 2015
An estimated 14.2 million people are victims of forced labor in private economic activities, according to the International Labor Organization (ILO). That’s a lot of people, and those goods produced with forced labor make their way into the global economy through complex supply chains, while businesses too busy with other things either don’t pay attention – or look away (at their increasing peril).

But awareness has been rising, and now an innovative competition has looked to technology for solutions to help identify and address a major obstacle in the quest forbetter corporate governance in any business – with less risk.
The Partnership For Freedom, a public-private partnership led by Humanity United and “dedicated to promoting innovative solutions to end modern day slavery in the United States and around the world” had what seems to me to be a very clever idea. It launched a competition - Rethink Supply Chains: The Tech Challenge To Fight Labor Trafficking,offering each finalist $20,000 and a grand prize of $250,000.
Announcing the finalists last week, Catherine Chen, director of investments at Humanity United ( part of the Omidyar Group) said: “Forced labor in global supply chains is a systemic problem. The solutions surfaced by these finalists leverage technology to combat this problem by bringing transparency to global supply chains and elevating workers’ voices across industries.”
The finalists were selected by a panel of judges with expertise across corporate supply chains, human rights, philanthropy and investing – all areas covered here. 


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