Brazilian Church gets human rights award
The Brazilian government has awarded the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT) the Human Rights Award 2003 in the Eradication of Slave Labour category for its work to combat slave labour throughout the country.
The Pastoral Land Commission (CPT) is an agency of the Bishop's Conference in Brazil and a partner of the Catholic aid agency CAFOD.
While the CPT received the "Institution" award, CPT priest and lawyer Frei Henri des Roziers OP was recognised in the "Individual" category for his tireless battle against slave labour in Brazil.
This award originally went to Francisco Medeiros, the Minister of the Supreme Labour Court, a Brazilian Government Agency that deals with justice issues related to workers and workers rights. Medeiros decided to pass on the award to Frei Henri in recognition of the wonderful work carried out by the Pastoral Land Commission in the south of Par· state.
The Ministry of Labour recognises that slave labour is still a big problem in many places in Brazil. Out of the 1,695 known cases of slave labour in Brazil in 2002, 1,193 cases were in the South of Par‡ where Frei Henri works alongside a very dedicated CPT team.
This is Frei Henri's second prize in a year. In August 2003 he received the Honorary Order of Merit - a top honour by the Brazilian Supreme Labour Court.
This is great honour both for Frei Henri and for the Pastoral Land Commission.
CAFOD has sent its warmest congratulations to Frei Henri and the rest of his team.