Human trafficking victims need not be afraid to seek help
3:00pm Monday 21st October 2013 in News
ANTI-trafficking campaigners are urging victims to seek help.
Victim Support in Bristol provides crucial help for those desperate to escape human trafficking but too scared to go to the police.
Clare, a volunteer with the charity, said: "Some of the people we have worked with were trafficked from Eastern Europe after being promised a good job, which of course never materialised. Problems they face include being forced into labour, awful living conditions – being fed once a day - ultimately their freedom is completely taken away.”
Affecting the very poorest and most vulnerable people in the world, trafficking can occur both across international boundaries and even within nation states themselves - as witnessed earlier this year with the systematic sexual exploitation of several girls by a criminal gang in Oxfordshire.
“The people we’ve supported are still hugely traumatised by the whole experience. Anxiety and depression can be huge issues for victims that have suffered this crime," she added.
Victims can often find themselves working against their will in anything from agriculture to the sex industry, while also being forced to live in the worst conditions imaginable.
There is currently no legislation solely dedicated to helping the victims of trafficking; something that may be remedied with the Home Secretary's proposed Modern Slavery Bill. Victims are often reticent to get involved in the criminal justice system, for fear of being treated like criminals themselves.
If you are a victim or have been affected by these issues or any other crime, and would like to speak to Victim Support in confidence, please call 08456 4566099.
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