June 19, 2020 Press Release
TODAY, NESTLE and CARGILL ARE STILL USING CHILD SLAVES TO HARVEST COCOA. HELP STOP THEM! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
Contact: Terry Collingsworth, Executive Director
firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter @tpcollingsworth
Today is Juneteenth, celebrating that on June 19, 1865, the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation was read to slaves in Galveston Texas, the last group thought to have not heard the news. In 1865, slavery was abolished in the United States by the Thirteenth Amendment. Today, millions of people are marching with Black Lives Matter to protest oppressive conditions as Black people are being murdered by police with impunity, and are not being given equal rights to education, health care, economic opportunity, voting and housing. We have much to do.
We are making some progress, but, remarkably, in 2020, Nestle and Cargill STILL control plantations in Cote D’Ivoire where trafficked children from Mali and Burkina Faso are being forced to work under slave-like conditions to harvest cocoa for these multinational giants. All of the large cocoa companies, including Mars, Hershey, Mondelez, Olam and Barry Callebaut, like Nestle and Cargill, have repeatedly admitted that child labor is persistent in their cocoa supply chains. Since 2001, when they signed the failed “Harkin-Engle Protocol,” they have promised to end their use of child slaves but have failed to do so. Recently the U.S. Department of Labor funded a study by the University of Chicago’s NORC which found that TWO MILLION AFRICAN CHILDREN ARE STILL harvesting cocoa. http://iradvocates.org/news/nestle/department-labor-study-child-labor.
In 2005 IRAdvocates with our partner Paul Hoffman sued Nestle and Cargill on behalf of children trafficked from Mali to harvest cocoa for these and other companies in Cote D’Ivoire. The case is dragging along, allowing the companies to keep benefiting from child slavery while their lawyers prolong the delay. Recently, Nestle and Cargill asked the Supreme Court to intervene in the case and hold that corporations are immune from liability under international law. They don’t deny that child slaves are harvesting their cocoa; they want to be excused on a legal technicality.
We will continue the legal fight to end Nestle and Cargill’s use of child slaves for as long as it takes. Please help us by taking a few minutes to contact the companies with a direct message that African children’s lives matter and slavery was outlawed in 1865. HERE’S HOW:
Cargill’s CEO Dave MacLennan put out yesterday on the company’s twitter ( @Cargill and @CargillEMEA) and facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Cargill/): “We stand with all who have spoken up to say Black lives matter and ‘not ever again.’” Please respond to this cynical and false assertion of solidarity by posting on the company’s facebook and twitter accounts (they do not give out the direct contacts for officers): Cargill CEO Dave MacLennon and General Counsel Anna Richo, the Lives of African Children Matter and Slavery ended in 1865! Stop using Black child slaves to harvest your cocoa. Work with IRAdvocates to end child slavery and establish meaningful independent monitoring and certification systems.
CONTACT NESTLE Please send this message directly to the email accounts of the officers below and also post on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/nestle.USA/) and twitter (@Nestle and @Nestle USA):
Nestle, the Lives of African Children Matter and Slavery ended in 1865! Stop using Black child slaves to harvest your cocoa. Work with IRAdvocates to end child slavery and establish meaningful independent monitoring and certification systems.
• Nestle CEO Mark Schneider: email@example.com
• Nestle Executive VP Laurent Freixe: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Nestle USA CEO Steve Presley: email@example.com; @NestleUSA
• Nestle USA VP Molly Fogarty: firstname.lastname@example.org
PLEASE ALSO POST YOUR MESSAGES ANYWHERE THAT CAN HELP GET OUR URGENT MESSAGE OUT. THANKS VERY MUCH!