The 2017 Freedom from Slavery Forum marked the fifth time this annual event was held and its fourth iteration in this format. The 2017 Forum was sponsored by the Elkes Foundation, with additional support from the Freedom Fund. The Forum took place October 5th through 7th at Stanford University, with the support of Stanford’s WSD HANDA Center for Human Rights and International Justice. The two-and-a-half-day event included off-the-record sessions for leaders of anti-slavery organizations, with one evening dedicated to an open event for interested members of the public.
The ongoing mission of the Freedom from Slavery Forum is to catalyze the anti-slavery and anti-human trafficking field and increase the collective impact of the movement. The Forum is designed to create a collegial space where anti-slavery leaders can coalesce, create partnerships, discuss promising practices, and develop a shared agenda for action. In 2017, over fifty leaders from around the world participated in the Forum. Participants built relationships and prioritized actions for mobilizing the civil society movement. 2017 Freedom from Slavery Forum Goals Based on the priorities identified at the 2016 Forum, the 2017 Forum focused on four specific goals in order to keep the conversation focused, manageable, and productive. The goals for the 2017 Forum were as follows:
- To advance understanding of prevalence and determinants of slavery
- To address gaps in knowledge with respect to applications of technology and antislavery interventions
- To encourage and advance survivor leadership and inclusion
- To craft a strategy for building a more robust civil society coalition against slavery