Hollywood artists team up with the ILO to end slavery
( ILO) - Oscar-winning actress and singer Cher is among the leading world artists who have joined forces with the ILO - the International Labour Organization - to fight modern-day slavery.
The Hollywood artists, athletes and activists supporting the "End Slavery Now!" campaign include Mila Kunis, Ron Howard, Oliver Stone, Kellan Lutz, Sérgio Mendes and Jada Pinkett Smith. Chivas USA goalie Dan Kennedy and anti-trafficking champion Somaly Mam are also taking part.
"I am proud to join the ILO in the fight against slavery," Jada Pinkett Smith said. "When we think of slavery, we think of the past. But the truth is that three out of every 1,000 people in the world today are either in forced labour, have been trafficked or work in slave-like conditions," she stressed. "This is wrong and it has to stop."
Almost 21 million women, men and children around the world are still victims of slavery and forced labour . They are trapped in jobs into which they were coerced or deceived and which they cannot leave. More than half of them are women and children. Children alone account for more than a quarter of today´s slaves.
"For all of us, having a decent job with a fair wage, having our fundamental rights protected and having access to minimum protection in times of need is a basic aspiration," said ILO Director-General Guy Ryder.
"Sadly, even today, millions of women and men, boys and girls are caught in the nightmare of slavery and forced labour. That's why the ILO is greatly encouraged to see so many leading artists join this fight. Together, we can make a positive difference and bring hope to those who yearn to work in freedom, equity, security and dignity."
The ILO is the UN agency that specializes in the world of work. It was founded in 1919 as part of the Treaty of Versailles that ended World War I to reflect the principle that universal and lasting peace can only be achieved if it is built on social justice. It was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969.