The Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights Action Update January 30-February 5

Our feature image shows our beloved Miriam (1947-2012)


Desiderius Erasmus in 1523 as depicted by Hans Holbein the Younger. The Greek and Latin words on the book translate to “The Herculean Labors of Erasmus of Rotterdam”.


This week we call your attention to a natural disaster that has impacted tens of thousands of people in the Philippines. We refer to the eruption of Mt. Taal on January 12. The Taal Volcano, located just 45 miles (72 km) from the Philippine capital city of Manila, has been trembling and erupting since Sunday, January 12. Experts report that magma levels are quickly rising and the volcano is on the verge of a full eruption. In the web site you will find a list of top rank charities that helping people impacted by the eruption. If you have difficulty, here is the list:

Charity (Sort A-Z)
International Medical Corps
Direct Relief
Taal volcano


We are adding a call to support Krembo Wings, an Israeli non-profit organization which brings children with and without disabilities together for weekly social activities in its branches across Israel. Krembo Wings serves children and youth of all backgrounds and reflects the diverse make-up of Israeli society. Krembo Wings motto is Together Creating a Meaningful Place for Everyone. The society provides a warm and friendly environment for children and adults who have special needs. This call will be a permanent feature of this blog. Please donate to this worthy cause,


Indigenous tribes do not simply die out. They are killed by the actions of so-called civilized nations. Survival International provides a long list of cases in which a letter from you can and will make a difference. Please open this link and write at least one letter. This link will be a permanent feature on our blog and we would be grateful if you gave it a bit of attention each week. We suggest going down the list in the order given. The letters are pre-written for you. All you need to do is send them. It would be nice also if a donation to Survival International could be forthcoming.

While Australia is being devastated by fire, the aboriginal people have a solution that they have used for 50,000 years. The authorities would do well to heed them.


We have added this section to the blog in order to join the struggle against slavery worldwide. This week we refer you to the the issue of enslaved workers in California.

Thousands of temporary workers are being trafficked into forced labor in California under threat of violence, deportation, and harm to their families

California attracts more temporary foreign workers than anywhere else in the US. As the fifth largest global economy, workers on lawful visas from all over the world seek opportunities in California.1

The vast majority of temporary workers are recruited via third-party foreign labor contractors (FLCs), some of whom act neither lawfully nor ethically. 

.The importance of checking your sellers’ supply chains cannot be overemphasized. Customer pressure to do the right thing is effective. Use It.


Look for these logos:



Urgent Action: Prisoner of Conscience’s Life at Grave Risk

Since his arbitrary arrest on 29 November 2018, Venezuelan labor rights activist Rubén González, 60, has suffered a series of health crises, but has never received adequate care. On 19 January 2020, Rubén González began experiencing a grave peak of hypertension, putting his life at risk unless he receives urgent medical attention. He is a prisoner of conscience and must be released immediately and unconditionally.



Urgent Action Update: Kurdish Iranian Man at Risk of Execution

Houshmand Alipour, from Iran’s Kurdish minority, is at risk of execution after he was sentenced to death on 29 December 2019 following an unfair trial. Mohammad Ostadghader, also an Iranian Kurd, was sentenced to 11 years’ imprisonment in the same trial. Both were denied access to lawyers of their own choosing and say they were forced to give “confessions” under torture and other ill-treatment.



Urgent Action Update: Lengthy Jail Terms for Prisoners of Conscience

On 12 November, a Russian military court found Crimean Tatar human rights defender Emir-Usein Kuku and his five co-defendants guilty of trumped-up charges. After a protracted unfair trial, they have been given prison sentences of between seven and 19 years in jail. Emir-Usein Kuku and his co-defendants are prisoners of conscience and they should be released immediately and unconditionally.



Support our current active campaigns


Ameos fires workers and refuses collective bargaining We call your attention to the conduct of the Ameos company in Germany. Workers at Ameos in Germany, a private for-profit hospital corporation, are demanding fair wages, secured by a collective bargaining agreement. In the federal country of Sachsen-Anhalt in the east of Germany, for example nurses receive up to 500 EUR less than comparable employees in other hospitals. But Ameos refuses to sign a collective bargaining agreement with the union, Please support their efforts for labor justice.

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