Three Business Leaders Awarded for their Fight against Today's Slavery
During the closing ceremony of the Luxor International Forum, the Jury announced its unanimous decision on the three winners of the Business Leader's Award to Fight Human Trafficking. They were chosen from a pool of almost 20 nominations submitted from all over the world.
This inaugural prize, the first of its kind, is designed to recognise the commitment, creativity and leadership of business leaders in fighting modern slavery - a crime that shames us all.
Human trafficking has many, complicated origins and manifests itself in a variety of forms: from the sex trade to labour exploitation, from child soldiering to street begging, from bondage to domestic servitude. It therefore requires multi-faceted solutions engaging all stakeholders. Business efforts to combat human trafficking are an essential part of the response, including corporate responsibility, social marketing, social entrepreneurship and leveraging core business strengths.
The Jury noted the many strong nominations addressing the different dimensions of human trafficking and different types of solutions: awareness-raising, prevention, protection, support, rehabilitation and reintegration, and law enforcement. In addition to its Chair, the Jury was comprised of H.H. the Aga Khan, H.R.H. Princess Mathilde of Belgium, Mr. Antonio Maria Costa, former Executive Director of the UNODC, Mr. Georg Kell, Executive Director of the UN Global Compact Office, and Mr. Bjorn Haugland, Chief Operating Officer, Det Norske Veritas.
Wanting to encourage a diversity of business approaches, the Jury took the decision to recognize three outstanding business leaders on whom to bestow the first ever Business Leader's Award to Fight Human Trafficking (listed in alphabetical order):
- Mr. Christopher Davis, International Campaigns Director, Body Shop International
- Ms. Marylin Carlson Nelson, Chairman, Carlson Companies
- Mr. Robert Rigby-Hall, Senior Vice President, LexisNexis, Inc.
The Jury emphasised the leadership, vision, innovation, and collaborative approach displayed by these individuals and their initiatives. In particular, the Jury members highlighted the global impact, comprehensiveness, and capacity to inspire others to replicate these or similar efforts.
Mr. Christopher Davis - Body Shop International
The Jury selected Christopher Davis, International Campaigns Director for the Body Shop International, for his leadership in designing and implementing an innovative global social marketing campaign to inspire long lasting change and put a stop to sex trafficking of children and young people.
In 2009, under the leadership of Mr. Davis, the Body Shop launched a 3-year strategic campaign in partnership with End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes ( ECPAT). This was the first campaign of its kind between a major cosmetics company and an international network of local NGOs to combat human trafficking.
Thus far, through the sale of ' Soft Hands Kind Hearts' hand cream, the Body Shop has raised more than 2 million USD for ECPAT to provide immediate relief to child victims of sex trafficking.
The campaign has also focused on creating long-term change through continued awareness-raising, public engagement and the lobbying of decision makers. This includes the development of an innovative Country Progress Card to assess progress made by States in combating child sex trafficking across 43 countries. Mr. Davis' efforts have also inspired Body Shop staff around the world to implement the campaign locally.
Ms. Marylin Carlson Nelson - Carlson Companies
The Jury selected Ms. Marilyn Carlson Nelson, Chairman and former CEO of Carlson Companies, for her pioneering corporate responsibility work, leadership and advocacy for the protection of children from sexual exploitation and trafficking in the tourism sector.
In 2004, under her leadership, Carlson Companies was the first major North American travel company to sign the Tourism Child Protection Code of Conduct. Since then, she has spearheaded the implementation of the Code throughout the Carlson Companies - reaching staff and customers worldwide. Her advocacy efforts have also contributed to the Code's success in motivating 950 companies in the tourism and travel sector to take child protection efforts.
Ms. Carlson Nelson's advocacy has extended beyond her own sector, to the World Bank, the World Economic Forum and other international fora, spreading the message that all can and must act to combat human trafficking.
Mr. Robert Rigby-Hall - LexisNexis, Inc.
The Jury selected Mr. Robert Rigby-Hall, Senior Vice President of LexisNexis, for his leadership and commitment to combating human trafficking. Over a period of years, he has put in place numerous anti-trafficking initiatives that address the wide spectrum of needs, from victim support to law enforcement.
Drawing on LexisNexis' expertise, these initiatives clearly demonstrate how companies can leverage their core strengths for maximum impact. Under Mr. Rigby-Hall's leadership in the area of investigation and legal prosecution of human trafficking, LexisNexis has created an online resource centre for attorneys who work with human trafficking victims. The company has also collaborated with the American Bar Association to train lawyers on potential civil remedies for victims of human trafficking. In addition, LexisNexis has been instrumental in the efforts in the United States to adopt uniform and effective laws against human trafficking.
To raise awareness, LexisNexis has forged partnerships and supported wide dissemination of films and documentaries on human trafficking among its stakeholders, including suppliers and clients. It has also partnered with a leading anti-trafficking NGO in South East Asia on a shelter for victims. Within the company and its own supply chain, LexisNexis has developed and implemented a Code of Conduct and engaged its employees in pro-bono legal work in the anti-trafficking arena.
In addition to the three Awardees, the Jury also gave special commendation to the pioneering work of Mr. Tristan Foster, founder and CEO of FSI Worldwide, as well as to Ms. Natasha Rufus Isaacs and Ms. Lavinia Brennan, co-founders and directors of Beulah London.