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Archbishop of York Reminds Us That Slavery Still Persists

Archbishop of York at City Hall, Hull.

Tuesday 30th October 2007

Reflecting on a recent visit to the West Indies where the where the evils of slavery had been rife, Dr. Sentamu compared the historical scene with forms of slavery today in his Wilberforce Events lecture.

The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu denounced all forms of oppression today in a lecture entitled 'Freedom is Coming' as part of the Wilberforce Events at Hull City Hall at 7.30pm on Tuesday 30 October 2007.

Archbishop of York with Schoolchildren at City Hall, Hull.Reflecting on a recent visit to the West Indies where the where the evils of slavery had been rife, Dr. Sentamu compared the historical scene with forms of slavery today.

Dr. Sentamu said: "Some 27,000,000 people are still enslaved today. For them freedom is barely a hope and far from reality. Slavery exists where one human being is dominated by another and has no choice in the matter. This takes many forms, direct and subtle, including children sold as slaves to finance debts, bonded slavery, sex trafficking, migrant imprisonment by unscrupulous employees, addiction to gang culture and phoney influences that damage our children's lives".

In a wide-ranging speech Dr. John Sentamu called for the eradication of below-subsistence wages and encouraged the wider community to support fair-trade produce including that of tea, sportswear and chocolate. The Archbishop also pledged to raise £1.5 million for a new academy in East Hull. The government has approved a feasibility study to develop the Archbishop Sentamu Academy which will be open to all and will help students and the whole community to work for the common good.

The Archbishop referred to William Wilberforce and his fellow campaigners as a source of inspiration. His speech is the fifth lecture in the 2007 series to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade. 

Read his full lecture by clicking on the related link.

Earlier in the day the Archbishop was greeted by drummers from Endeavour School, and was accompanied by the students from the Streetlife Museum to visit Wilberforce House Museum (23-25 High Street HU1 1NQ ).

ENDS

About the Wilberforce Lecture Trust:

The Wilberforce Lecture Trust celebrates the historic role of Kingston upon Hull in combating the abuse of Human Rights personified in the work of the abolitionist William Wilberforce. http://www.wilberforcelecturetrust.com

Previous lecturers in 2007 include Archbishop Fitzgerald, the Prime Minister of Barbados, Archbishop of Canterbury and The Honourable Navinchandra Ramgoolam.

For media enquiries relating to the Archbishop of York, please contact Elizabeth Addy at tel. 01904 707021.

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