Protecting Migrant Populations from Forced Labor at Sea.

Free COMPASS E-Learning Courses are Now Available!

The commercial fishing industry, deemed one of the most important economic sectors in the world, relies on large numbers of migrant workers to flourish. These migrants are frequently recruited from refugee and displaced populations and are highly vulnerable to human trafficking. They often are subject to force, fraud, and coercion at all stages of the seafood supply chain, from catching the fish to processing and shipping for export.

Modern day slavery in commercial fishing is fueled by a vastly unregulated industry, coupled with a rising global demand for low-cost seafood. Migrants are duped by fraudulent recruiters who promise excellent salaries and wages while charging exorbitant amounts of “fees” with arbitrary interest rates. Many migrants find themselves laboring on vessels for months to years at a time, struggling to survive physical and psychological abuse, restricted movement, lack of sleep, threats of violence, and isolation.

Interested in learning more to enhance your current anti-trafficking efforts? COMPASS (Coalition of Organizations and Ministries Promoting the Abolition of Slavery at Sea) is offering free e-learning modules and downloadable materials to those interested in acquiring knowledge and skills to identify, screen, and respond to trafficking victims in the maritime industry more effectively. Topics include:

  • Human Trafficking 101
  • Fishing Terminology
  • Trafficking at Sea: the Legal Framework
  • Recruitment
  • Pre-departure Orientation
  • Mental health
  • Trauma informed care
  • Guidelines for Safe Shelter Operations
  • Outreach and Awareness Raising

You can begin your learning journey by creating an account. Go to http://usccb.interactyx.com/. Click “Sign up here” and complete the registration form. Once logged in, you will see all COMPASS courses and resources under the Catalog list. (Look for the Anti-Trafficking Category on the left hand side.) To enroll in a course, simply click ‘Start’. You will be taken to the course home page and can begin.

Also, we want to hear from you! If you have any questions about content or want to recommend new course topics, leave us a message in the forum section or email Lisa Lungren at llungren@usccb.org.