Today Catherine Bearder MEP made a speech to the European Parliament on the EU's approach to human trafficking.
Please see the full text below:
"Mr President, European action on this issue is long overdue, so I was very pleased to hear Mr López Garrido's remarks on children, the Commissioner's remarks and, this morning, that Commissioner-designate Malmström plans to bring forth a new directive in this area as a priority."
"I want to urge both the Council and Commission to look at the support systems for victims, particularly the specific needs of trafficked children, who have very different needs to those of trafficked adults. In the UK, last year alone, 325 children were identified as being suspected victims of trafficking. Many of those were UK citizens trafficked within the UK, not externally sourced, if I might use that expression."
"There are children in my own region who are trafficked but we find that, even after registration with social services, many trafficked children just disappear because they remain under the control of their traffickers. They find it just too easy to re-traffic these children. This occurs all over the EU and we must put a stop to it. Trafficked people are voiceless and vulnerable and they rely on the European Union to speak out for them, to stop this abhorrent crime, and to care for them."