October 18 - European Day against Human Trafficking
Human trafficking is a modern day’s crime committed against millions of men, women, and children worldwide every year. It involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labour or commercial sex act. Through the use violence, manipulation, or false promises of well-paying jobs or romantic relationships, the traffickers inflict pain and degradation to whole communities and victims can be any age, race, gender, or nationality. In total disregard for human dignity and rights, traffickers treat victims as a mere commodity that can be used and even sold, thus fuelling a multi-billion-dollar form of international organized crime.
Barriers and fears of all sorts make human trafficking a hidden crime. Yet key indicators of human trafficking are a first step in identifying victims and can help save lives.
„After much neglect and indifference, the world is waking up to the reality of a modern form of slavery. The public and the media are becoming aware that humans prey upon humans for money. Parliaments are passing appropriately severe laws. The judiciary is facing its anti-slavery responsibility, with more prosecutions and convictions. Civil society and (to a lesser extent) the private sector are mobilizing good-will and resources to assist victims.”
I have quoted from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime „Global Report on Trafficking in Persons”. From 2009.
Today is probably a good day for us to stop for a while from what we usually do, and think: are we, individually and collectively, doing enough to get out of this paradigm of fragmented knowledge and disjointed responses which gives way to a crime that shames us all?