Connect with us

News

Women Report Abuse, Human Trafficking and Rape on Palm Oil Plantations: AP Investigation

Published

on

The Associated Press revealed a harrowing in-depth investigation on Monday that exposed rape and abuse in palm oil fields in Malaysia and neighboring Indonesia, which together produce 85 percent of the world’s most versatile vegetable oil.

“Palm oil is found in everything from potato chips and pills to pet food, and also ends up in the supply chains of some of the biggest names in the $530 billion beauty business, including L’Oréal, Unilever, Procter & Gamble, Avon and Johnson & Johnson, helping women around the world feel pampered and beautiful,” the AP reported.

It was the “first comprehensive investigation focusing on the brutal treatment of women in the production of palm oil, including the hidden scourge of sexual abuse, ranging from verbal harassment and threats to rape. It’s part of a larger in-depth look at the industry that exposed widespread abuses in the two countries, including human trafficking, child labor and outright slavery.”

“Almost every plantation has problems related to labor,” said Hotler Parsaoran of the Indonesian nonprofit group Sawit Watch, which has conducted extensive investigations into abuses in the palm oil sector. “But the conditions of female workers are far worse than men.”

More than three dozen women and girls from at least 12 companies across Indonesia and Malaysia were interviewed for the AP investigation. They met with female AP reporters secretly within their barracks or at hotels, coffee shops or churches, sometimes late at night, usually with no men present so they could speak openly, the AP reported.

There are an estimated 7.6 million women working on plantations in Indonesia, about half the total workforce, according to the female empowerment ministry. In Malaysia, there are a large number of foreign migrants working off the books and, therefore, the total number of women working on plantations is unknown.

“From birth until now, I am still on a plantation,” said one worker, who went by the moniker Indra for fear of retaliation.

“The location of palm oil plantations makes them an ideal crime scene for rape,” said Aini Fitri, an Indonesian official from the government’s women and children’s office in West Kalimantan province. “It could be dangerous in the darkness for people, especially for women, but also because it is so quiet and remote. So even in the middle of the day, the crime can happen.”

The AP investigation goes further into detail about the beauty brands and other products containing palm oil, including Girl Scout cookies. Read more here.

Continue Reading
Click to comment
 
 

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. The New Civil Rights Movement depends on readers like you to meet our ongoing expenses and continue producing quality progressive journalism. Three Silicon Valley giants consume 70 percent of all online advertising dollars, so we need your help to continue doing what we do.

NCRM is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. From unflinching coverage of religious extremism, to spotlighting efforts to roll back our rights, NCRM continues to speak truth to power. America needs independent voices like NCRM to be sure no one is forgotten.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure NCRM remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to NCRM, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

News

Brothers of White Nationalist Congressman Apologize for His False Claim Insurrectionist Was ‘Executed’ by Police

Published

on

Two brothers of U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ) went on national TV Thursday to apologize for his accusation this week that Capitol Police were “lying in wait” and “executed” a Trump insurrectionist, 35-year old QAnon believer Ashli Babbitt, on January 6.

“On behalf of the actual sane members of our family, which is everyone but Paul, we apologize,” they said on CNN, to D.C. Officer Michael Fanone for their brother’s “despicable comments and disgraceful conduct through this whole incident.”

On Tuesday during a hearing on the January 6 insurrection Gosar, a white nationalist, demanded FBI Director Chris Wray release the name of the officer who killed Babbitt. Babbitt was attempting to break into the Speaker’s Lobby, a hallway in the Capitol just outside the House Chamber.

Calling her killing “disturbing,” Gosar told Wray in front of cameras that Babbitt was “executed,” which is false.

“The Capitol Police officer that did that shooting appeared to be hiding, lying in wait and then gave no warning before killing her,” which is also false.

Gosar is one of the leading members of Congress who have promoted Donald Trump’s “big lie,” that the election was stolen from him.

Watch:

 

Continue Reading

News

Watching Biden Meet Putin Was ‘The Real Moment’ Trump Realized He Wasn’t President Anymore: NYT’s Haberman

Published

on

New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman told CNN on Thursday that former President Donald Trump seems to be finally accepting that he’s no longer president six months after leaving office.

In particular, Haberman said that Trump and his allies came to grips with this fact while watching President Joe Biden meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Switzerland this week.

“This is the event that underscored for people around Trump and the former president himself the fact that he’s not president anymore,” she said. “This was the kind of event on the world stage, getting enormous attention, that he really enjoyed, that he saw as one of the trappings of the office that he thought spoke to a sense of power and strength… it was the real moment of, ‘Oh, someone else is president and not Donald Trump.'”

Host John Berman noted that Trump this week has seemed particularly needy for positive affirmation.

“His organization sent an email around yesterday telling everybody he’s more popular than ever before, he’s the leader of the Republican Party,” Berman said. “It really seems to matter to him.”

Watch the video below.


 

Continue Reading

News

GOP Congressman Refuses to Shake Hand of Cop Who Saved His Neck on January 6

Published

on

Washington, D.C. Metropolitan Police Officer Michael Fanone was one of 140 law enforcement officers injured protecting the U.S. Capitol and members of Congress on January 6. He was so badly beaten he suffered a heart attack fighting Trump’s insurrectionists but he was conscious enough to hear at one point the rioters scream, “Kill him with his own gun!”

On Wednesday, one day after 21 House Republicans voted against a bill to award Congressional gold medals to all the police officers who fought to save lives and democracy on January 6, Officer Fanone was in the U.S. Capitol, and ran into Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-GA).

Congressman Clyde, who sits on the Homeland Security Committee and is one of the 21 who voted against the awards, refused to even shake Officer Fanone’s hand.

Clyde is the lawmaker who falsely compared the rioters and insurrectionists to a “normal tourist visit.”

U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) took to Twitter to make the accusation, which was backed up by Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a Republican.

Here’s video of Officer Fanone being attacked by Trump’s insurrectionists:

Here’s Congressman Clyde literally barricading the door on Jan. 6, with members of the Capitol Hill Police:

Here’s Clyde outright lying:

 

 

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2020 AlterNet Media.