I’ve used a carbon footprint calculator before but until today, I had never used a slavery footprint calculator. According to a CNN article, the U.S. State Department teamed up with a watchdog group to create the SlaveryFootprint.org website and free Android app. Although an iPhone app is not yet available, the Made in a Free World website reports that the app will be coming to the iTunes App Store soon.
Even though I try to watch my consumption levels, I’m probably a pretty typical consumer. I’m married with two children, we have two vehicles and we live in a suburban neighborhood. I decided to fill out the Slavery Footprint questionnaire to see how many of my items were likely made with forced labor.
As you proceed through the survey, you are given several eye-opening statistics. Did you know that there at least 27 million slaves in the world today? According to the website, this is more than the populations of Australia and New Zealand combined. That is quite a frightening number.
Survey questions focused on the following topics:
- Number of children you have
- Home ownership status
- Size of your home
- The type of food you eat
- Personal care products
- Your jewelry
- Electronic devices (I’m a gadget geek)
- Sporting goods
- Whether or not you’ve ever paid for sex
I actually ran into an issue when trying to answer the “What’s Under Your Roof?” question – I have a four-bedroom, three-bath home with a home office and two vehicles, but once I added the bedrooms and bathrooms, I was unable to add more items. It is likely that if I had added the remaining items, my slavery footprint score would have been even higher.
However, I don’t know what my slavery footprint is because no matter what I tried or which web browser I used, it never showed me a score. I hope this wasn’t because the score was so high that the site wasn’t equipped to show it. Perhaps the site is just busy because of the CNN.com coverage. I’m planning to go back to fill out the survey again at a later date to see what my slavery footprint is and find out where I can make changes. However, I didn’t want to wait until I could get the site working properly before I shared it with you.
If you’re able to get the calculator to work, what was your slavery footprint score?