CNN has launched a major initiative to cover the horrors of human trafficking with a year-long programing effort called The CNN Freedom Project: Ending Modern-Day Slavery. As part of the Freedom Project, CNN will report on the subject throughout 2011 with coverage on CNN International (CNNI) and CNN.com.
"It's our journalism-based assertion that this is the greatest uncovered breaking news story of today, and CNN plans to rip the lid off," said Tony Maddox, executive vice president and managing director of CNN International in a statement. "The inhumanity of those who trade humans is truly shocking and should be stopped. Our coverage will spotlight not just those responsible, but the many courageous groups and individuals on the frontlines doing genuinely admirable work."
The effort, which launched today, will include special reports on trafficking on every CNNI signature program for the full first week of the The CNN Freedom Project. Then, throughout the rest of the year, CNNI will continue air numerous reports on the subject - with a focus on solution-oriented information and analysis - within specific programs and documentaries.
The expanded coverage will also involve close collaboration between CNNI and CNN.com that will include a special The CNN Freedom Project site on CNN.com. The online project will allow viewers to dig deeper into the subject and include a CNN.com's Freedom Project blog that will feature a diverse range of voices, from celebrity activists to anti-slavery campaigners.
Other online features include "The Number," a weekly graphic that breaks down the numbers related to human trafficking; "Solutions," success stories about people and nations who are fighting slavery; and iReports.
Content from the Freedom Project blog is also available through CNN's mobile website.
This week's coverage of the subject includes reports from Richard Quest, who looks at forced labor and corporate responsibility, Becky Anderson, who speaks to a Ugandan woman forced into slavery and Jim Clancy, who sits down with U.S. President Barack Obama's anti-trafficking czar Luis CdeBaca and U.N. Ambassador Mira Sorvino about human trafficking.
CNN en Español will also be marking the launch of The CNN Freedom Project today with special reports and packages and CNN Student News will also develop resources for teachers and parents on the subject.