Enduring Net Humanitarian Initiative
Slavery is Prevalent in Present Day Society
Most people don’t realise it, but slavery still exists today in all countries including the highly developed nations in Europe and North America.
Contemporary slavery takes the form of forced labour, bonded labour, human trafficking, descent-based slavery, child slavery, and forced and early marriage.
According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), there are more people trapped in slavery today than at any other time in history.
In 2016, more than 40 million people around the world were victims of slavery. Of these, some 25 million were in forced labour while more than 15 million were in forced marriages. An estimated five million people are in forced sexual exploitation. In addition, 152 million children are in child labour with 71 million engaged in hazardous work. The remaining 81 million “are simply too young to be working.”
Mobilising Global Action to Eradicate Modern Slavery
Clearly, this exploitation of vulnerable segments of the global population is unacceptable and cannot be allowed to continue. The global community has renewed its commitment in the UN Sustainable Development Goals to eliminate all forms of child labour by 2025 and forced labour by 2030.
Two-pronged Enduring Net Approach Leverages DLT and AI
In keeping with the ILO initiative to mobilise global action to eradicate modern slavery, Enduring Net – a consortium of academia, researchers, blockchain developers, IT and business professionals, and passionate advocates – has set out to leverage distributed ledger technologies (DLT) and artificial intelligence (AI) to develop a network for exchanging information across geographical boundaries and coordinate action at national and global levels.
Today, those engaged in the fight against modern slavery are hampered by the lack of a common platform and easy-to-use applications to facilitate the sharing of forced labour intelligence. The nature of their work also calls for ensuring the anonymity of informants and support personnel.
The systems and solutions Ensuring Net is seeking to create will be accessible by all in 194 states, yet will keep the identity of players confidential. The network will also facilitate supply chain audit and certification.
Enduring Net envisions a two-pronged approach to eliminating modern slavery by establishing the following:
• Enduring Red Nets to lodge forced labor incidents, facilitate cross-border missing person matching, and track each victim’s journey through the support network.
• Enduring Green Nets to track transparency in supply chain (TISC) compliance among companies; corporate environment, social and governance (ESG) performance; and product provenance within supply chains.
Creating a Bespoke System for Each Community
The bespoke system Enduring Net will help each community build is expected to reduce the costs of information sharing. It is an efficient way to get enforcement agencies and victim support organisations to work together at the same level. The deployment of AI can help to identify companies with highly risky supply chain. The pattern and volume of reported incidents could point to organised crimes. Data on reporting and response rates can be used to evaluate individual support network and inform resource allocation.
You Can Help – Join the Enduring Net Effort
Enduring Net seeks to rally blockchain developers, user interface/user experience designers and programmers, data privacy experts, lawyers and advocates around the globe to come together to champion the fight against modern slavery and develop a distributed network of systems and solutions to address the global scourge.