ABA ROLI and PADF Facilitate Know Your Rights Workshops for More Than 90 Workers and Community Leaders in Rural Areas of Pará, Brazil

In early April 2024, the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) facilitated two important workshops on “Sowing and Reaping Rights: Decent and Fair Work as a Human and Social Right” (Portuguese, Semeando e Colhendo Direitos: o trabalho digno e justo como direito humano e social). With more than 90 participants, the workshops were for workers and community leadership from rural areas of Pará—a northern state in Brazil—seeking to learn more about their labor rights and the prevention of slave labor. With funding by the U.S. Department of State Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, the workshops were facilitated through ABA ROLI’s joint program with the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF), and in partnership with the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT), and Society for the Defense of Sexual Rights in the Amazon (SODIREITOS).

Taking place on April 2, the first workshop was held in the city of Marabá and brought together more than 60 workers and community leaders from the municipalities of Marabá and Itupiranga. The workshop had the support and participation from our partners, CPT, SODIREITOS, and the Federal University of Pará (Portuguese, Universidade Federal do Pará). The second workshop was held on April 4, and included more than 30 workers from the municipality of Ulianópolis, being supported by PADF and Just Rights.

ABA ROLI conducted and facilitated the workshops through consultant Vitor Hugo Moraes, who used participatory and education methodologies on ways to prevent slave labor. The approach included visual and musical elements, objects for participants’ artistic expressions and interactive displays to encourage a feeling of welcome and appreciation for each person present.

The workshops were divided into three parts: in the first part, groups shared stories about the issue, heard reports from rescued workers, and reflected on the right to work as a human right. In the second part, there was a discussion about decent and fair work, labor rights, and the characterization of work analogous to slavery. Finally, the workshop ended with identifying strategies to mobilize the population and confront the exploitation of workers.

The training not only provided participants with information and knowledge about labor rights in Brazil, but also trained mobilizers, raising awareness of the collective commitment to defending fair work. During the two days of workshops, the workers and the leaders of the selected communities got to know each other and exchange personal experiences. They showed enthusiasm and gratitude for the knowledge-sharing and discussions during the gatherings—reflecting on the importance of these training workshops for vulnerable audiences as an important strategy in preventing work analogous to slavery.

Published on April 19, 2024.

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Program to End Modern Slavery (PEMS) Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons

This website article was funded by a grant from the United States Department of State. The opinions, findings and conclusions stated herein are those of the author[s] and do not necessarily reflect those of the United States Department of State.

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