Human trafficking is the second largest illegal trade in the world. It is an increasingly disturbing phenomenon in Europe with terrible consequences for victims. Between 500,000 and 800,000 women are trafficked each year in the EU. In 2011, the Metropolitan Police estimated that up to 11,800 women may have been trafficked into England and Wales and there are at least 10,000 slaves in the UK.
21st November 2012, All Nations Centre, Cardiff
According to 2011figures released at the end of August by the United Kingdom Human Trafficking Centre (UKHTC);
• Sexual Exploitation (31%) and Labour Exploitation (22%) were the two most prevalent exploitation types reported
• 52 UK citizens were trafficked for sexual exploitation; over 80% of these were female children
• 2 potential victims of trafficking for organ harvesting were reported
Victims of human trafficking are victims of coercion, exploitation, deception, kidnap, false imprisonment and rape. And they are not only adults and teenagers; The UN estimates that some 1.2m children are trafficked across the world each year.
In response to the growing need to raise public awareness and improve support for victims of human trafficking, Bawso in partnership with the Welsh Government, Gwent Police, Welsh Women’s Aid, Barnados and Oxfam are bringing together experts from around the world to an International Conference on Human Trafficking.
The conference is supported by the Welsh Assembly Government and will be opened by Carl Sargeant AM, Minister for Social Justice & Local Government and chaired by Carmel Napier, Chief Constable, Gwent Police and Domestic Violence Lead, Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO).
It will integrate European knowledge and provide a platform to bring together case studies and best practices with important contributions from EU policymakers, international organizations and NGOs from across Europe. The conference will also facilitate policy discussion and explore comprehensive and integrated solutions to fighting the ‘hidden’ crime of human trafficking.
Bawso support people from Black and Minority Ethnic backgrounds who are affected by domestic abuse and other forms of abuse, including Female Genital Mutilation, Forced Marriage, Human Trafficking and Prostitution. The charity supports victims of trafficking through the Diogel Project which was set up in 2009 and provides secure accommodation and outreach services across Wales.
Chief Executive Mutale Merrill OBE said; “We recognise that the subject of human trafficking is something that the majority of people in the UK have little or no knowledge of, however it is an issue that as a society we all need to be aware of. Human Trafficking destroys lives and its effects damage individuals, communities, the economy and wider society. We need to do more to prevent this horrific crime and support the victims. Please join us on 21st November and help to bring human trafficking out of the shadows”.