Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI)

A report on slavery was recently released by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) and an international anti-slavery organisation Walk Free on the occasion of World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.

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Key findings:

  1. Commonwealth countries account for about 40% of people living in conditions of modern slavery in the world.
  2. Commonwealth nations are lacking in actions to eradicate modern slavery by 2030.
  3. There is an estimated one in every 150 people in the Commonwealth living in conditions of modern slavery.
  4. One-third of the Commonwealth countries had criminalised forced marriage, while 23 had not criminalised commercial sexual exploitation of children.
  5. Out of 54 countries, only four engage with business to investigate supply chains, and all countries report gaps in victim assistance programs.

India- specific findings:

  1. India has fared the worst in terms of coordination, “with no national coordinating body or National Action Plan in place”.
  2. India had not ratified the International Labour Organisation’s 2011 Domestic Workers Convention or the 2014 Forced Labour Protocol.
  3. India accounted for one-third of all child brides in the world.
  4. Despite being the largest country in the region, India has the weakest response on national coordination, with no national coordinating body or National Action Plan in place.

About the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI):

It is an independent, non-profit, non-partisan, international non-governmental organisation working in the area of human rights.

In 1987, several Commonwealth professional associations founded CHRI, since there was little focus on human rights within the association of 53 nations although the Commonwealth provided member countries the basis of shared common legal system.

  • Roles and functions: CHRI promotes adherence to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Commonwealth Harare Principles and other internationally recognised human rights instruments, including domestic legislation supporting human rights in Commonwealth countries.
  • It is headquartered in New Delhi, India.

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