Waiting for their Passover: Forced Child Labor

The Kitah/Hay 5775 religious school class at Dorshei Tzedek has prepared a new ritual for the Passover seder, entitled Waiting for their Passover, about forced child labor in the chocolate industry. It is meant to be read after or instead of “The Four Children” in the Haggadah.

Even though on Passover we celebrate our freedom, many people around the world ARE NOT FREE. Many people who work in the chocolate industry gathering cocoa beans in countries in West Africa are either paid much under minimum wage or nothing at all. Even children under the age of eight are sometimes taken from their families and out of school to work gathering cocoa beans. They use tools that could easily cause injury. The companies that “employ” these people either are unaware of the situation or don’t care, despite the fact that this is against the law. Nestle, one of the biggest child labor industries, has stalled for many years. Twelve years ago, they were asked to create a policy that would monitor the chain of supply from the farmers to the stores. However, Nestle said they needed five years. It has been twelve. While we celebrate freedom, some people are still waiting for their Passover.

This new ritual is now featured on Fair Trade Judaica’s Pesach resources page.

(photo credit: slavefreechocolate.org)

Download the complete ritual in the file listed below.