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Wednesday, 11 July 2018 19:23

Mercy Sister takes fight against trafficking all the way to UN

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0718SrAngelaReedatUN 350Australian Mercy Sister Angela Reed believes in the right of every person to flourish and this belief has driven her all the way to the United Nations where she oversees her congregation’s advocacy work, with a focus on the trafficking of women and girls.

A Global Sisters Report feature article on Sr Angela says that she represents Mercy International Association / Mercy Global Action at the United Nations and is Mercy International Association's global action coordinator.

She holds a doctorate from RMIT University in Melbourne, where her research focused on trafficking and the experiences of Filipina women trafficked for sexual exploitation.

While Sr Angela says demand stemming from human trafficking must be addressed, she is a passionate believer that supply cannot be ignored.

"We need to challenge the dominant narrative [of] ... human trafficking as a random act of victimisation to a more systematic process of cumulative marginalisation leading to victimisation," Sr Angela said at a March 13 UN forum.

She advocates for trafficking survivors telling their stories at forums like the United Nations.

"Formerly trafficked women and girls challenge the view that being trafficked for sexual exploitation is a single, isolated event in their lives," she said. "Instead, they draw attention to human rights violations and systematic oppression" across their life trajectories.

Asked what nourishes her spiritually, she told Global Sisters Report, “I believe in the right of every person to flourish.”

“I've had a relatively privileged life. Even with moments of challenges, I had a safe and secure family and childhood. Supports have been in place in my life. That should be available for everyone. I love the quote from Jeremiah [29:11] that God's plans for us are full of hope and not disaster or harm.

“It's very important that women flourish and have choices in their lives, and that really stems from the idea that we are made in the image of God and that we have to affirm that, affirm human dignity. I have faith in God, who is overarching and loves us all.”

To read the full Global Sisters Report article on Sr Angela's ministry, written by Chris Herlinger, click here.

 

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Thumbnail photo: Global Sisters Report/Chris Herlinger

Top right: Global Sisters Report/Mercy International