In the news ...

Brickmaker laborer murdered leaving 3 children in slavery

"A pregnant Pakistani woman killed alongside her husband for alleged blasphemy was wrapped in cotton so she would set alight faster, relatives who witnessed the horrific attack revealed.

Shama Bibi, 24, and her husband Sajjad Maseeh, 27, also had their legs broken so they could not flee the mob that locked them inside a brick-making factory before their murder.

The couple were surrounded by crowd of at least 1,200 and thrown on top of a brick kiln where they were burned alive, witnesses said." read more

Pakistan's child slaves

"Every morning 17-year-old Naser wakes up to make bricks, toiling for 14 hours a day, seven days a week. This is what he has done almost all his life. He's never been in school and he's never had the chance of a proper childhood.

Naser -- not his real name -- is among hundreds of thousands of so-called bonded child laborers at Pakistan's brick kilns. These workers are trapped by family debts that are often impossible to pay off.

If he refuses to obey his boss, Naser says he pays a price: "He beats me up if the work doesn't get done." read more

Pakistan kiln workers live like 'slaves'

"In Pakistan, brickmaking is one of the most important building materials industries employing about 10 million people directly and indirectly.

However, an estimated two million children also work for up to 14 hours a day, six days a week in brickmaking kilns, lacking basic rights and access to social security.

In a country now ranked as having the third highest prevalence of modern-day slavery according to the 2013 Global Slavery Index report, activists say they have been violently attacked for trying to secure better treatment for workers" read more

Many children in Pakistan

are trapped in slavery ...

"Millions of workers in Pakistan are held in contemporary forms of slavery. Throughout the country employers forcibly extract labor from adults and children, restrict their freedom of movement, and deny them the right to negotiate the terms of their employment. Employers coerce such workers into servitude through physical abuse, forced confinement, and debt-bondage. The state offers these workers no effective protection from this exploitation. Although slavery is unconstitutional in Pakistan and violates various national and international laws, state practices support its existence. The state rarely prosecutes or punishes employers who hold workers in servitude. Moreover, workers who contest their exploitation are invariably confronted with police harassment, often leading to imprisonment under false charges.

 

Contemporary forms of slavery, which are set forth and defined in international law, include debt-bondage, serfdom, the trafficking of women, and child servitude. All of these forms of slavery exist in Pakistan. While all such forms of slavery deserve and require documentation, this report focuses primarily upon debt-bondage.

Debt-bondage in Pakistan is endemic and widespread. The International Labor Organization (ILO), in its World Labor Report 1993, assesses the problems of debt-bondage in Pakistan to be among the worst in the world. There are no reliable statistics on the number of bonded laborers. Indeed, the difficulty involved in obtaining accurate numbers gives some indication of the magnitude of the problem. While some NGOs estimate that the numbers range into the millions, there is little doubt that at least thousands of persons in Pakistan are held in debt-bondage, many of them children. Bondage is particularly common in the areas of agriculture, brick-making, carpet-weaving, mining, and handicraft production." Human Rights Watch

“For I assisted the poor in their need and the orphans who required help. I helped those without hope, and they blessed me. And I caused the widows’ hearts to sing for joy. Everything I did was honest. Righteousness covered me like a robe, and I wore justice like a turban. I served as eyes for the blind and feet for the lame. I was a father to the poor and assisted strangers who needed help.” (Job 29:12–16, NLT)
 

"Every brick the blood of a slave. An estimated 12 million Pakistani children, enslaved by debt bondage, are exploited as labourers in the brick-making and other industries."

 

 

Brickmaker Children Blessing ...

A friend of mine in Karachi, Pakistan recently went on a short journey to a local area of brick production. She wrote me the following:

"Children work at the brick kiln factories and live a life of slaves along with their parents. Whole families work for whole day long and they get only $1 or $2 a daily wage. Many work for their muslim owners and the 'owners' rule over their lives. Life at the brick kiln factory is really tough. People can't even feed their children with the money they get. Children don't receive an education and there are no medical facilities.

God has given me the vision and heart to work for such children. Whenever i visit them i arrange a special meal for them and try to help them with second hand clothes because i am teacher and i help them with the salary i get from my school.

I was there few days back and i was so sad to see little children working in such hard condition and helping their parents make bricks. I want to buy them new clothes, shoes and stuff like that on this Christmas and also take them some cake, because they have never tasted cakes in their lives. Some of them don't even know what it looks like."

Other ways you can help. you can download and print a poster to put up in your place of worship, or store. It will be very much appreciated.
 
 

It is our desire to provide some basic necessities, such as shoes, decent clothing, and hygiene items – such as soap, toothbrushes, and toothpaste. Is it too much to ask that you find it in your heart to share 'a cup of coffee' with a slave child? If you would be willing to give up a $5 cup of designer coffee for a child who was born into slavery, we will make sure to at least purchase food, clothing, shelter and other basic necessities. All monies raised will go into the purchase of these items.

It would be tremendous if anyone would be willing to pay off the debt of a slave family, and set them free. That could cost $1,000 or more.

Anything you can do to help would be appreciated.

 
Of course, I don’t mean your giving should make life easy for others and hard for yourselves. I only mean that there should be some equality. Right now you have plenty and can help those who are in need. Later, they will have plenty and can share with you when you need it. In this way, things will be equal. As the Scriptures say, “Those who gathered a lot had nothing left over, and those who gathered only a little had enough.”” (2 Corinthians 8:13–15, NLT)  

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