3 April 2017: Doing something rather than nothing…

Please show your support for Dorsen

Ever since I watched Alex Crawford’s news report on #Dorsen, I’ve been anxious. I’m not complaining. I’m compelled to do this, but wish I had more talent. I’m not sure what I can do, but then I get an email which puts things into perspective.

Dear Flinty,

Thanks for your email. I saw the documentary of Dorsen and friends at the Dutch news, and I was really shocked. Since then, I have been searching on the web to find more information, and try to find people who were as shocked as I was. Happily I found your website and the gofundme initiative. I am really happy to see that you are so pro-active regarding the cobalt children, I will definitely follow your updates at the website. Indeed, we need corporates to be more responsible regarding to human rights. I am more aware of the electronica that I buy (but also when I buy clothes or chocolate), this really woke me up.

Thanks for all the initiatives and good work that you are doing. I hope to say in touch.

Best Wishes,
Dieuwerke

Dieuwerke’s email reassured me and brought me back to the simple idea that I must do something, however inadequate I am.

Evil prevails when good men and women do nothing…

Today I…

  1. Watched the Sky News film, trying to pick up clues were Dorsen, Richard and the other children were filmed.
  2. I wrote on Tom Cheshire’s Facebook page (Tom’s a Sky News technology correspondent, and he spoke to Bryce Lee of Hauyou Cobalt about the use of children in the cobalt supply chain). I asked Tom if he knew where the mines were located in Alex Crawford’s film, Meet Dorsen who mines cobalt for your mobile phone.  Here’s an clip. Heartbreaking.
  3. I read Laura’s Fairphone blog. Summary: I understood it as this: legislation to address human rights abuses in DR Congo is on the books, but will not come into effect until 2021, and it will apply to upstream companies (the ones that source the minerals and refine them). Downstream companies, like Samsung, Apple, Sony, Microsoft, will get off the hook. Meanwhile, children still face a 12 hour day in slave labour conditions, perhaps having not eaten for a couple of days, and with the hope of earning a few pennies. It’s so cruel.
  4. I emailed Fairphone from their website to ask if they would support this campaign, somehow. I so hope they will. They seem like good people and are making mobile phones to the best fair trade standards possible at this time.
  5. I created an Ebay account for MeetDorsen. I need to think of things to sell to raise more money. Was also reading about fundraising yesterday: raise more than £5k for a charitable purpose and I need to register as a charity.
  6. Got in touch with a company in Leeds (my old home town). They make badges and lots of other promotional stuff. Great website. Asked if they would give me preferential terms if I ordered badges (I’m thinking of #Dorsen).

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