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Fighting slavery, war and child abuse on Valentine’s Day

It’s getting tough to do the right thing on Valentine’s Day.

How do you avoid buying blood diamonds or chocolate made from the work of child slaves? Even the carefree purchase of flowers for your loved one can, if you dig a bit deeper into where they came from, cause cupid to wince. To wit:

Bloomberg: Making sure that Valentine Diamond isn’t tainted with blood

Mercury News: Does your chocolate come from slave labor?

Atlantic: There’s a 1-in-16 chance your flowers came from child laborers

So far as I know, nobody has identified any abuses or social harm from buying a card for your loved one. But what should you do if you would like to get one of these typical gifts for a loved one?

Last year, I wrote this piece on How to avoid the dark side of buying chocolate, which was big news at the time due to the fact that the cocoa industry was alleged to have been funding one side in the civil war roiling Ivory Coast at the time.

Here are some other articles aimed at helping you make socially responsible VD purchases:

HuffPo The women behind your flowers

ONE Six suggested Valentine’s Day gifts

Good Valentine’s gifts that aren’t evil



About Author

Tom Paulson

Tom Paulson is founder and lead journalist at Humanosphere. Prior to operating this online news site, he reported on science,  medicine, health policy, aid and development for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Contact him at tom[at] or follow him on Twitter @tompaulson.