Today Catherine Bearder MEP wrote a letter on human trafficking to the regional press in South East England.
Please see below for the full text:
In the early 1800s the abolitionist movement recognised that all men, women and children have the right to live their lives free from bondage. They ensured that slavery in the UK would be outlawed indefinitely. However, 200 years after their success, we live in a world with a greater number of slaves than there were during the time of William Wilberforce. This fact is a stain on our society and one many people are working very hard to reverse.
In today's globalised world communities are more interconnected than at any time throughout our history. We all gain from this but we must work to ensure these benefits are not hijacked for the advantage of organized cross-border crime. The EU is working to stop this and has had some significant successes. Cooperation on policing operations has improved and international conventions against trafficking have been signed. But there is still much more to be done. The Labour Government, for example, needs to stop delaying ratification of the Council of Europe's Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse.
Sunday 18th October is EU Anti-Trafficking day. I hope we can use it to raise awareness of this important issue. If enough people are aware of it then we can be more successful at tackling it. I been working with organisations such as ECPAT UK and Stop the Traffik, and there are many more people and organizations in this area also doing good work. I thank them and offer them my support.
Readers can add their support by getting in touch with local organizations that campaign on this issue. Even visiting websites, like www.stopthetraffik.org or www.ecpat.org.uk, can do the world of good for helping share information. It's about time the issue of human trafficking was given a higher position on the Government's agenda.