Freedom Awards

Anti-Slavery Australia hosts the biennial Freedom Awards – the only prize in Australia which recognises the outstanding contributions of individuals, organisations and businesses to combat modern slavery and make a positive impact on the lives of trafficked and enslaved people.

The Freedom Awards celebrate diverse anti-slavery initiatives and highlight the achievements and work being done across the community to combat modern slavery.

Anti-Slavery Australia is excited to announce that our biennial Freedom Awards will be back in 2023!

Anti-Slavery Australia’s Freedom Awards are awarded to individuals, organisations or businesses that demonstrate significant contributions to combating modern slavery or supporting survivors in Australia.

This year, there were awards in six categories. More details of the award categories can be found below.

The winners were announced on 24 March 2023! 

Overview and Purpose

    In 2023, we will mark an important year in the fight against modern slavery and will celebrate the extraordinary advances that have been made in Australia since we first celebrated the Freedom Awards in 2011.

    Australia has a new five-year National Action Plan to Combat Modern Slavery 2020–25, launched in 2020 and witnessed its first statutory review of the Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth).

    The Anti-Slavery Australia Freedom Awards are an opportunity to publicly recognise and celebrate the vital contributions of individuals, organisations and businesses in the fight against modern slavery.  The Freedom Awards also seek to raise awareness of modern slavery and promote the positive difference that individuals, organisations, and businesses can make to the lives of those affected by modern slavery.

      Award Ceremony

      the recipients of the 2023 Freedom Awards were announced at the Award ceremony, celebrated on Friday 24 March in the Great Hall at the University of Sydney.

      Award Categories

      In 2023 there will be awards for outstanding contributions to initiatives against modern slavery in six categories:

      Human rights and modern slavery medal

      This award is for an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to combating modern slavery in Australia.

      Survivor leadership or advocacy Award

      This award recognises the valuable contributions of survivors through a range of activities, including the development of law and policy

      Impact Award

      The Impact Award recognises effective research or policy advocacy that resulted in positive and significant influence on policy or legislation at the regional, national or international levels;

      OR recognises programs, activities or initiatives that prevent, protect or support survivors of modern slavery.

      Innovation Award

      The Innovation Award is awarded to an organisation, individual or business who demonstrated an innovative approach in the prevention or elimination of modern slavery in supply chains and operations.

      Campaign Award

      The Campaign Award recognises effective advocacy to raise awareness of any or all forms of modern slavery.

      Collaboration Award

      The Collaboration Award recognises effective partnerships and collaborations to prevent and eliminate modern slavery.

       In addition, the recipient must:

      • Be working within Australia or have a substantial and continuing connection to Australia; and
      • Have made a sustained contribution to the area; and
      • Demonstrate an ethical and best practice approach.

      Modern Slavery includes human trafficking, slavery and slavery-like practices such as forced labour and forced marriage.

      More information about the selection panel and process can be found on the nomination form.

        Freedom Award Recipients


        • Vanessa Zimmerman received the Inaugural Human Rights and Modern Slavery Medal for her outstanding contribution to combating modern slavery in Australia.

        • Moe Turaga received the Survivor Leadership and Advocacy Award for his outstanding contribution to survivor advocacy to combat modern slavery.

        • Robyn Parkin received the Impact Award in recognition of her outstanding contribution to anti-slavery initiatives in the financial sector.

        • The OAASIS Project received the Innovation Award for the project’s outstanding contribution to the identification and prevention of modern slavery in global supply chains.
        • Ramila Chanisheff and Rex Patrick received the Campaign Award for their outstanding contribution to the prevention of forced labour in global supply chains.
        • Investors Against Slavery and Trafficking Asia Pacific received the Collaboration Award in recognition of the project’s outstanding contribution to preventing modern slavery.


        • Chris Crewther Chair of the Foreign affairs and Aid Sub-Committee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade for his outstanding contribution to the abolition of all forms of slavery in Australia
        • Dr Darian McBain, Global Director of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability at Thai Union Group, for her outstanding contribution to the field of ethical sourcing and human rights in the seafood industry.
        • James Bartle, founding CEO of Outland Denim, for his outstanding contribution to combatting modern slavery in the fashion industry
        • Måns Carlsson-Sweeny, Head of Environmental, Social and Governance Research at Ausbil, for his contribution to Modern Slavery Awareness in Financial Services (High Commendation)


        • Kate van Doore, Griffith University Law School and co-founder Forget Me Not Australia, for her outstanding contribution to research and advocacy in the area of orphanage trafficking
        • Dr Kathy Landvogt, Safeguarding Lead, Good Shepherd Australia and New Zealand, for her outstanding contribution to research and advocacy in the area of forced marriage.
        • Konica Minolta Business Solutions Australia Pty Ltd, for an outstanding contribution to the field of ethical sourcing and human rights.


        • Baptist World Aid Australia, for their Behind the Barcode Campaign
        • Alison Aggarwal, Principal Adviser/Manager at the Australian Human Rights Commission in recognition of an outstanding contribution to human rights and anti-slavery initiatives in Australia
        • Alan Morison, veteran Australian journalist, Phuketwan News Service, Thailand for an outstanding contribution to the fight against modern slavery and human trafficking
        • Dr Maree Marsh csb, Brigidine sister, psychologist and former chair of ACRATH, (Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans) for her outstanding contribution to the protection and support of human trafficking survivors in Australia


        • Melissa Stewart, for her significant work in the area of policy, research, and evidence-building work on trafficking in persons in Australia and globally since 2009
        • Christine Caroline, for her instrumental work in ensuring the successful operation of ACRATH’s Anti-Trafficking efforts
        • The Human Trafficking Section of the Commonwealth AGD for their significant contribution to Australia’s anti-trafficking efforts


        • Rebecca Corby, for her significant contribution to the anti-trafficking work of the Australian Federal Police Human Trafficking Team.

        • Mark Zirnsak, for his significant contribution to combating labour exploitation through his work on ethical supply chains.


        • Sister Louise Cleary, Chair of the Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans
        • Sister Pauline Coll, Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans
        • Jennifer Cullen, Australian Federal Police
        • Dr Anne Gallagher, Special Adviser on Human Trafficking
        • Dr Dianne Heriot, former Assistant Secretary, Attorney-General’s Department
        • Ms Fiona McLeod SC
        • Ms Merima Trbojevic, Department of Immigration and Citizenship
        • The Australian Red Cross, Support for Trafficked People Program
        • Josephite Counter-Trafficking Project
        • Project Respect
        • Scarlet Alliance
        • Salvation Army, Safe House for Trafficked Women.