10 December 2013

Today, all around the world, we are celebrating UN Human Rights Day!

nieuws fotoAs you know, human trafficking is both a cause and a consequence of severe human rights violations. The La Strada International NGO Platform – United against human trafficking in Europe welcomes the positive developments in the EU to protect the rights of trafficked people. However, in our daily work we continue to see many cases where the protective measures are not being implemented in practice. Together with our partners all over Europe we are voicing our concerns about this.

According to the Directive 2011/36/EU on preventing and combating trafficking in human beings and protecting its victims, certain rights must be given to trafficked people, such as shelter, legal aid and temporary residence.  They should also receive financial compensation and not be punished for offences they have committed as a consequence of being trafficked. With these tools they have a chance to rebuild their lives.

Without access to their rights, it is incredibly hard for people who have been trafficked to gain control of their future. They also become at risk of being re-trafficked. To illustrate this we would like to share Anna's story with you.

It is very encouraging to see that the Commission has started infringement procedures on those countries who have not yet transposed the Directive yet. But we are not there yet. The protective measures of the Directive have to be implemented in practice and we feel the effects of EU legislation should be much more closely monitored.

La Strada International will continue to monitor in order to assess the impact on the lives of trafficked people we encounter in our work. We hope the story of Anna and that of many others will inspire you to use all your capacity to ensure the rights of trafficked people are respected.

Please contact us if you would like to know more about the rights violations we see.

The La Strada International NGO Platform - United against human trafficking in Europe consists of: Gender Perspectives (Belarus), Animus Association (Bulgaria), La Strada Czech Republic, Open Gate (Macedonia), La Strada Moldova, CoMensha (The Netherlands), La Strada Poland, La Strada Ukraine, Association of Young Azerbaijani Friends of Europe, Anti-Slavery International (UK), ASTRA - Anti-Trafficking Action (Serbia), Hope Now (Denmark), KOK (Germany), Lefö (Austria), Living for Tomorrow (Estonia), Novi Put (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Pag-Asa (Belgium), PICUM (Belgium),  Proyecto Esperanza (Spain).