Thomson Reuters Foundation

Let’s confine slavery to the history books


Let’s start with the good news. Since my last trip to the Davos mountains, in the past year there has been substantial increase in awareness around one of the world’s most horrible crimes: slavery. More investigative reports have been published, more money has been committed to the fight against human trafficking, world leaders such as Pope Francis have publicly taken a strong stand, and heroes such as Kailash Satyarthi have received the Nobel Peace Prize. The issue is certainly in the public domain.

The bad news is that slavery is still very much a silent crime, and a flourishing business worth US$150 billion a year, more than the GDP of most African countries, and three times Apple’s earnings.

The scale of the problem is huge. According to Walk Free, there are 35 million people enslaved around the world, the highest number in history, and roughly equivalent to the population of Australia and Greece combined.

Slavery takes different forms, from forced prostitution and labour to debt bondage. The common denominator is poverty. Victims are needy and vulnerable; they don’t know their rights. In some countries, people are still born into slavery.

Clearly something needs to be done. But where to start? (more…)

Women-friendly cities: It’s not about money, it’s about ideas

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Trust Women, which took place November 18-19, is more than just a conference. It’s a fast-growing movement to put the rule of law behind women’s rights through concrete action. Delegates from 55 countries, representing 260 international organizations are here to take action and forge tangible commitments to empower women. Weren’t able to attend? No worries. Check out the session recordingsconference news,  photos, and join the conversation using #twc2014.

“We are now an urban species. How humanity moves forward will involve urban challenges.”

One of the first panel discussions at the Trust Women conference focused on this: when it comes to making mega-cities women friendly, it is not about money – it is about ideas.

Following the release of our Foundation’s global poll ranking the most dangerous transport systems for women in major cities, the two-day event kicked off with an intense examination of the ideas around how women might be safer and freer to move around their cities.

“We are now an urban species. How humanity moves forward will involve urban challenges.” Panelist and MIT researcher at Senseable City Lab Ricardo Alvarez told Trust Women. (more…)

News with impact

Journalism is one of the pillars of the Thomson Reuters Foundation. They cover the world’s underreported stories, the issues that mainstream media often forget. Their editorial team includes 26 correspondents across five continents and a powerful network of more than 100 contributors, enabling them to cover stories at the heart of aid, development, human rights, climate change, corruption, and social innovation. Every day, brings you features, analysis, info-graphics, blogs and exclusive videos. Their content is syndicated for free to prestigious news outlets and is accessible to all Reuters clients around the world. See how our Foundation informs, connects and empowers.

Continuing our evolution to meet the needs of today’s professionals: Our 2013 Annual Review


We are pleased to announce the launch of our multimedia 2013 Annual Review.

Today’s professionals operate in a world that doesn’t wait for anyone to catch up. Like our customers, we are aggressively pursuing the opportunities presented by a complex, demanding and constantly changing marketplace.

Building on our history of innovation, which stretches back more than a century, we help our customers stay ahead of the tsunami of information with global information platforms that are faster, simpler and more connected.

Along with our Letter to Shareholders and a look-back at our legacy of innovation, the Annual Review summarizes our 2013 financial performance and highlights our: (more…)

New white paper to combat human trafficking using financial activity

Learn about a recent white paper below, published by the Thomson Reuters Foundation, which offers guidance to financial institutions and law enforcement agencies in identifying financial transactions linked to human trafficking.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., and Monique Villa, CEO of the Thomson Reuters Foundation, issued international guidance aimed at helping the wider industry to identify and report irregularities in financial transactions that might be linked to human trafficking activity. The document is the product of a unique collaboration with some of the world’s leading financial institutions, and is the key outcome of the financial working group initiated last year on 25 April by DA Vance and Ms. Villa…read the full post.

Thomson Reuters Foundation’s Trust Women Conference

Trust Women Conference

The Foundation’s second annual Trust Women Conference closed  with strong commitments to action from leading women’s rights organizations and global leaders in law, finance, business and government.

Over 450 global leaders from 40 countries attended ‘Trust Women’ which featured a range of high-profile speakers including UK Home Secretary Theresa May, Italian Foreign Minister Emma Bonino, New York County District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance;Queen Noor, Cherie Blair, Christy Turlington Burns, and Sima Samar, Chairperson of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC), who brought their knowledge, influence and experience to the debate.

Trust Women focused on the pervasive global exploitation of vulnerable individuals, men and women alike – from everyday street harassment to modern-day slavery. Many of the speakers recalled their own experiences of abuse and violence, inspiring shock, surprise, and action from the audience.

Speakers attending the conference were asked to present specific actions that directly addressed problems facing women around the world. In dedicated ‘action groups’ delegates were then encouraged to contribute by offering concrete help and solutions. (more…)

Thomson Reuters Foundation honors outstanding pro bono legal projects at TrustLaw Awards

TrustLaw Awards

Over 100 high-level representatives from the global TrustLaw community gathered in New York on November 5 to celebrate the success of the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s fast-growing network of lawyers, social enterprises and high-impact NGOs.

The occasion, the third annual TrustLaw Connect Awards, brought together professionals from Turkey, China, South Africa, Cambodia, Mexico, the Philippines and many other countries, who flew to New York to attend the ceremony hosted by Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO and TrustLaw Founder Monique Villa. The TrustLaw Awards honor teams of lawyers working with NGOs or social enterprises through TrustLaw Connect, the Foundation’s global pro bono service.

“We chose New York to recognize the fantastic impact of the law firms based in the U.S. which have been so active to help our social enterprises and NGOs through TrustLaw. The top law firms in the U.S. are members of TrustLaw Connect, and since its creation three years ago, the network has generated $35 million worth of free legal assistance to our beneficiaries,” said Monique. (more…)

Thomson Reuters Foundation poll – graphic of the day

Thomson Reuters Foundation’s third annual poll of gender experts gives a snapshot of the state women’s rights in Arab states three years after the Arab Spring and as Syria’s conflict threatens further regional upheaval. Sexual harassment, high rates of female genital cutting and a surge in violence and Islamist feeling after the Arab Spring uprisings have made Egypt the worst country in the Arab world to be a woman. Check out more coverage of our expert poll on women’s rights in the Arab world.

Global modern-day slavery – graphic of the day

Almost half the world’s estimated 30 million slaves (defined as persons denied of freedom and exploited for profit or sex) are in India, according to a global index released last week. Make sure to read Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO, Monique Villa’s excellent editorial on the subject. You should also check out her appearance on Al Jazeera’s Inside Story.

Would you like infographics like this on your website, blog or other social media? Contact us and visit our Reuters Agency blog for insights and discussions on the changing media industry.

They walk among us – Monique Villa on modern-day slavery

The work of the Thomson Reuters Foundation in the global fight against human trafficking was featured on AlJazeera’s flagship program Inside Story. The roundtable brought together Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO Monique Villa, Free the Slaves President Kevin Bales, and modern slavery expert Benjamin Skinner, to discuss the lucrative and growing business of modern-day slavery.

Make sure to read Monique’s excellent piece on human trafficking.