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January 30, 2023
Africa Business Health news Rape and sexual assault Somaliland US news World news

Somaliland’s frankincense brings gold to companies. Its women pay the price

Female workers tell of exploitation and sexual assault at frankincense warehouse supplying US essential oils company

“I’m not speaking metaphorically – a bottle of doTERRA essential oil can change the world,” says David Stirling, a mild, clean-cut, middle-aged man. His largely female audience cheers and whistles, as if for a celebrity. Stirling, then CEO and co-founder of doTERRA, a Utah-based multi-level marketing company that sells essential oils, is making his opening remarks in September 2021 to the packed Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City.

In a setting reminiscent of a megachurch, Stirling’s soft-spoken voice echoes. He reminds the audience that the world needs healers more than ever – “and that’s you”, he says, to raucous applause. He quotes CS Lewis, speaks of miracles and says he’s seen people turn to doTERRA in their lowest moments. People cry.

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