6PM TO 7.15PM, ACST,
6.30PM TO 7.45PM, AEST

Online Event
Presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre

Access Video HERE

Australia has a history of slavery. We need to understand and acknowledge that slavery is part of Australia’s past, but it is also a part of our present. Modern slavery exists across the world, and Australia is no exception, but Australia can take a global leadership role in combating modern slavery.

Our panel will shed light on how slavery in Australia is not contained to black-and-white photos, but is happening right now. Discussing the Modern Slavery Act (2018), they will describe the Act’s guiding principles together with the responsibilities of individuals and businesses to respect and protect human rights.

The panel will discuss the prevalence of modern slavery in Australia and across the globe, including human trafficking, forced labour, servitude, debt bondage and forced marriage. Discussion will also consider how Australia exacerbates the global slavery problem by importing products that are potentially produced through forced labour and what we can do to remove slavery in our supply chains.



Khadija Gbla is a high profile, passionate and inspiring African Australian woman. She is an award-winning human rights activist, inspirational speaker, facilitator and philanthropist. She has displayed great courage and determination in achieving her aspirations of giving women, youth and minority groups a voice at a local, state and international level. Khadija utilises her powerful and inspired voice to advocate equality and inclusion.

Khadija Gbla was born in Sierra Leone, spent her youth in Gambia, and as a teenager put down roots in Australia. Khadija was just 3-years-old when the war broke out in her country, Sierra Leone and 10 years later they attained refugee status and resettled in Adelaide. Khadija provides advocacy, training, speaking on domestic and family violence, sexual health, racism, human rights, mental health, migrants and refugees and cultural diversity through her cultural consultancy, Khadija Gbla Cultural Consultancy.

Khadija is the Founder of The Desert Flower Centre Australia. The Desert Flower Centre Australia is the first centre in Australia and the Asian pacific region that specialises in providing holistic, comprehensive gynaecological and urological reconstructive surgery and trauma informed care for women impacted by female genital mutilation. The centre also provides training for professionals, advocacy for individuals impacted and at risk of FGM and community education for practicing communities in Australia.

Khadija is an Ambassador for Our Watch. Our Watch is a national leader in the primary prevention of violence against women and their children in Australia. Our Watch works to embed gender equality and prevent violence where Australians live, learn, work and socialise.

Khadija is also an Ambassador for SisterWorks, a non-for-profit social enterprise which supports refugee and migrant women to become economically empowered through the model of learning by doing. Through work and entrepreneurship, SisterWorks support women who are refugees, asylum seekers or migrants to improve their confidence, mental wellbeing and sense of belonging.

She has represented Australia in the international arena at the Harvard National Model United Nations, Commonwealth Youth Forum and Australian and Africa Dialogue and Commonwealth Heads of States Women’s Forum. Khadija has been recognised through numerous awards for her vision and leadership, including 2019 Instyle Magazine The Advocate for Acceptance Human Rights Award, 2017 Cosmopolitan magazine women of the year finalist, 2016 Women's Weekly and Qantas Women of the Future finalist, 2016 AusMumpreneur Rising Star and Making a Difference –non-profit Award, 2014 The Advertiser South Australia’s 50 most Influential Women, 2013 Madison Magazine Australia's top 100 inspiring Women, 2013 Amnesty International Human Rights Activists to watch out in 2013, 2011 State Finalist Young Australian of the Year - just to name a few.

Twitter: @KhadijaGbla



Skye Kakoschke-Moore is a former Senator for South Australia. She is a passionate advocate for the advancement of human rights, the elimination of gender discrimination and the protection of children from sexual exploitation.

While in the Senate Skye was a member of the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Law Enforcement and took part in that committee’s inquiry into Human Trafficking. Since leaving the Senate Skye has worked as a Special Adviser to the global NGO International Justice Mission where she provided strategic advice in relation to advocacy for the Modern Slavery Act.

She was also a Director at Fair Supply, Australia's first law firm dedicated to partnering with companies to implement the transparency requirements of the Modern Slavery Act. Skye is a Director and the Company Secretary of Be Slavery Free and is currently a Policy and  Research Leader with JFA Purple Orange, a social profit organisation dedicated to advancing policies to improve the life chances of people living with disability. Skye lives in Adelaide with her husband Simon and their beagle Grace.

JFA Purple Orange
Twitter: @SkyeKM



Carolyn Kitto is Co-Director of Be Slavery Free - a coalition of civil society, community and faith groups and unions seeking to prevent, disrupt and abolition Modern Slavery.

Her background is in community consultation, strategic planning, human rights engagement, international development and youth work. Her work in recent years has been in shepherding the developing of a robust Modern Slavery Act and supporting business with resources in their role in ending Modern Slavery.

Be Slavery Free was the 2017 winner of Anti-Slavery Australia’s Freedom Award for “Recognition of campaigning excellence to prevent modern slavery.” Be Slavery Free seeks to end modern slavery through engaging business and community cultures to be slavery-free; curating and convening conversations which promote best practice learning and through designing and experimenting with system changes and collaborations.

Be Slavery Free  
Twitter: @Carolyn_Kitto


Tory Shepherd

Tory Shepherd is a columnist at The Advertiser, a freelance writer, and the author of On Freedom.

After finishing Honours in Anthropology and a Masters in Communication, she ended up as a ‘mature-age’ cadet at the paper 15 years ago. She is a Walkley Award judge and a Churchill Fellow.

AdelaideNow News Archive: Tory Shepherd
Twitter: @ToryShepherd
Facebook: Tory Shepherd



This event is presented as part of Just A Thought, an exclusive In-Conversation series presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre with Tory Shepherd. Hear captivating interviews with inspiring contemporary thinkers and change-makers who are shaping Australia’s future. Speakers will share their thoughts on addressing our most pressing issues and discuss how we can have a positive impact on our society. 

Other events in this series:
Senator The Hon Penny Wong
Dictators, Despotism and Democracy
How to be a Star Citizen in Space
Breaking the News

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Presented by The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre

Image: Panel Members, Clockwise: Khadija Gbla, Skye Kakoschke-Moore, Carolyn Kitto, Facilitator, Tory Shepherd

While the views presented by speakers within The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre public program are their own and are not necessarily those of either the University of South Australia, or The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre, they are presented in the interest of open debate and discussion in the community and reflect our themes of: Strengthening our Democracy - Valuing our Diversity - Building our Future.

The copying and reproduction of any transcripts within The Bob Hawke Prime Ministerial Centre public program is strictly forbidden without prior arrangements.