Ethical Easter

"Hundreds of thousands of children labour in the West Coast of Africa to produce cocoa, the main ingredient in chocolate. Specifically, over 40% of the global supply originates in the Ivory Coast, where the US Department of State reports that over 109,000 children work under the worst forms of child labour. Of these 10,000 are victims of human trafficking or enslavement. Children working in cocoa production labour long hours and are often required to use dangerous tools. They are frequently exposed to toxic pesticides in the fields that create health issues and are forced to walk long distances in extreme heat. Furthermore, because these children work long hours they are denied access to an education." -- From Free2Work.org It may have been a few years since working with Not For Sale in the seemingly always foggy and slightly chilly Half Moon Bay, but the knowledge I learned while memorizing statistics [...]

2016-03-20T13:50:34+00:00

iPhone? Ethics in Electronics

Generic mirror selfie with my new iPhone 5c Almost as bad as jean shopping and swimsuit shopping, shopping for a new cell phone can be quite the daunting experience. They’re expensive, they tend to always break (perhaps from dropping them one too many times without a fancy case), they don’t do water well (unless a really fancy case exists around it), and yet they are so necessary to the life I lead. Currently my phone provides me with the resources to check my class schedule and see where all my classes are, find out when the bus is coming so I can get to Toronto and back to Hamilton, I can read the Bible, snap fun photos, edit them, then post them to share with friends and family as a little peek into my life since a majority of them live at least 2,000 kilometers away. While the pros definitely [...]

2014-09-30T14:32:00+00:00

Challenge: Ethical Valentine’s Day

The mystery surrounding who Saint Valentine really was is quite fitting to the often-mysterious image surrounding the idea of love. Most stories peg Saint Valentine as a man who either secretly married Christian couples at a time when Christians were being persecuted and were unable to do so, or, he secretly married couples so the husband wouldn’t have to go off to war. Most of these stories of individuals secretly pledging their undying love end with Saint Valentine landing himself in jail. The only bit of information that seems known is Saint Valentine died on the date we know as Valentine's Day, February 14th. The mystery surrounding Saint Valentine and the way we celebrate a holiday with little knowledge of it, bear shocking similarities to how we celebrate the holiday with chocolate, sweets, flowers and cheaply made themed goods. The mystery of how chocolate is harvested and made is a [...]

2014-02-11T23:29:00+00:00

Human Trafficking Prevention

Image found on Pinterest I’ve heard January be referred to as Human Trafficking Awareness month. As the beginning of research generally starts, I opened up Google and typed in ‘Human Trafficking Awareness Month.’ Upon skimming through the top few headlines one link in particular caught my eye. Posted by the White House, it was a letter that President Obama wrote announcing January 2014 to be National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Every part of me was filled with excitement. This is exactly what we need. Awareness is one thing, and a good thing, but prevention is where we should be focused after awareness has been reached. Once you are aware, there needs to be another step involved-- something practical and tangible and that, my friends, is Prevention. I know, I know. You might be thinking ‘How can I prevent slavery?’ You may not be actively involved in the sex [...]

2014-01-21T18:05:00+00:00

Challenge: Ethical Christmas

Putting the words 'Ethical' and 'Christmas' together is quite the statement. From a faith-based perspective, this simple phrase would have one epic meaning! From a live-my-life-without-slavery perspective, it can take on another. I believe the two go hand in hand to create a holiday season that remembers why we celebrate to begin with, and allows that remembrance and celebration to flow into how we purchase the goodies for our festivities. I’m currently going through a series for Advent by She Reads Truth called Emmanuel. One of my favourite parts about the series is the daily “Advent Action.” Each day, after reading scripture and the accompanying devotion, you pray, then are given an Advent Action to perform. These actions are anything from listening to a meaningful song (O Come, O Come, Emmanuel being one of them) to baking a loaf of bread and writing meaningful letters to friends. Each action is [...]

2013-12-20T00:13:00+00:00

Challenge: Ethical Halloween

“Trick or Treat?!” Allow me to reminisce and take you on a journey to the ‘middle-of-nowhere’ Manitoba where I grew up…. Halloween Win: dressing up as your cat and your mom making your Halloween costume. Where I grew up was literally the middle of nowhere. Our closest neighbours were miles away and we were the only house down the mile stretch of road that could possibly just be considered our massive driveway. Without fail, on Halloween, it was going to snow. Due to the snow, costumes were made to fit over bulky winter jackets and if your costume wasn’t, you had to wear your bulky winter jacket over top to ensure you would actually enjoy your Halloween and not complain about the cold that would surely overtake you as it progressed further into the evening. Since I grew up in the middle of nowhere, walking from house to house like [...]

2013-10-30T14:00:00+00:00

The Three Super Labels: Natural, Organic and Ethical

Oh, if only… If only Natural, Organic and Ethical came hand in hand. Life would be easier, shopping would become a little simpler, and everyone involved in the entire process of what we are purchasing—from food to foundation— would be treated in a way we could all smile about. Unknowingly doing so, I tend to associate each label with one particular genre of item. When it comes to produce at the grocery store I look for Organic, with lotions and potions* (*read- makeup) anything Natural is ideal, and Ethical is how I source my clothing keeping in mind the A-F grading system of Free2Work. Why do I have these dividers in my mind? I don’t really have a specific answer. After contemplating the possible responses all I find as a reasonable answer is this is how we have been fed information—through streams of now trendy descriptors on the items we [...]

2013-09-30T18:52:00+00:00

Challenge: Clothing with a Conscious

Spring Fever. I have it. I don't know if it is highly contagious, if I caught it from someone-- but I have a firm belief I can almost 100% back up with proof that it is brought on by the weather. This fever will only break once temperatures warm up outside. Symptoms can be treated by sitting by windows so you can be all 'cat-like' and bathe in the sun (something I am known for doing anyways), drinking smoothies and eating salad reminiscent of summer-time picnics and gatherings, and by shopping-- preparing yourself for when the fever breaks. As I sit in my wonderful husbands coffee shop, at the long wooden coffee bar that could be a picnic table-esque, drinking my Mango green tea and basking in the sun streaming in warmth from the large window in front of me, I think of a few things: 1- Sunshine is awesome and I'm [...]

2013-05-06T16:51:00+00:00

Challenge: Ethical Easter

"Hundreds of thousands of children labour in the West Coast of Africa to produce cocoa, the main ingredient in chocolate. Specifically, over 40% of the global supply originates in the Ivory Coast, where the US Department of State reports that over 109,000 children work under the worst forms of child labour. Of these 10,000 are victims of human trafficking or enslavement. Children working in cocoa production labour long hours and are often required to use dangerous tools. They are frequently exposed to toxic pesticides in the fields that create health issues and are forced to walk long distances in extreme heat. Furthermore, because these children work long hours they are denied access to an education." -- From Free2Work.org I'd like to propose a challenge. As with all challenges, this will not be the easiest thing you have ever done. It will require thought, effort, will power and commitment. It will require [...]

2013-03-14T00:58:00+00:00