Interconnected: Domestic work in Australia and abroad

Interconnected: Conversations on domestic work in Australia and abroad

A joint event between the Mercy Foundation and contributors to the Interconnected photography exhibition on modern slavery.

Thursday 5 September 2019, 7 pm – 9pm, Thirning Villa Ashfield

Join us for a conversation with individuals engaged in research–from the Gulf States to the Pacific–focused on shedding light on the hidden occupation of domestic work.

Moderator: Jenny Stanger, Executive Manager, Anti-Slavery Taskforce, Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney, founder of The Salvation Army’s Trafficking and Slavery Safe House and 20-year veteran of the anti-trafficking movement.

Laura McManus, Human Rights practitioner and researcher for the exhibited series Portraiture of Domestic Workers in Nepal. Laura worked in Nepal for two years, where she returned after the 2015 earthquake and partnered with Swatantrata Abhiyan Nepal and photographer Monica Frisell on this project.

Dr. Matt Withers, Macquarie University, Department of Sociology Research Fellow, political economist and migration researcher addressing temporary labour migration from Sri Lanka and across the Indo-Pacific.

Shih-Joo Tan, Ph.D. Candidate, Monash University, examines the experiences of migrant domestic workers in Singapore and Hong Kong. Specifically, her research focuses on the nexus of protection and regulation practices as well as workers’ agency and security, and how this interplay impacts on workers’ access to justice and protection.

Heather Moore, Managing Director for the Trafficking and Slavery Research Group at Monash University and author of Service or Servitude: A Study of Trafficking for Domestic Servitude in Australia (Mercy Foundation & The Salvation Army). Heather has been engaged in anti-trafficking work since 2003 through a variety of roles, including survivor support, capacity building, advocacy and research.

Interconnected: Slavery in the past, present and future is a photography exhibition that depicts stories of survivors.

From an isolated village in Sierra Leone to the dusty brick kilns of India, the exhibition portrays survivors whose lives have been affected by slavery in different ways: domestic workers in Nepal, child soldiers in northern Uganda, families in bonded labour in India. It also speaks of the legacies of the transatlantic slave trade with the story of the Ganga Longoba people from Cuba who reunited with their ancestors in Sierra Leone after 170 years of separation. The exhibition is a powerful statement and tribute to the resilience and pride of survivors who have had their lives changed by enslavement.

The exhibition is a collaboration between American photographer, Monica Frissel and Australian human rights practitioner/human rights researcher, Laura McManus, Cuban photographer, Sergio Leyva Seiglie, and Norwegian documentary-maker and human rights researcher, Tina Davis.