Counter Human Trafficking
South Africa, like many of our neighbours, is plagued by human trafficking. Durban, with one of Africa’s largest and busiest ports, is a major human-trafficking destination for victims within the country, region and beyond. South African children are taken from rural to urban areas to work in the sex trade or as domestic workers, and young men from Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe labour on South African farms without pay. And yet, there’s currently NO legislation that criminalises human trafficking or protects victims. The hidden nature of the crime & lack of legislation means we don’t have any official statistics on the numbers being trafficked in or out of South Africa – a fact that actually sustains the problem, as Ingrid Palmary of the Migration and Society at Wits University states:
“We really don’t know what the nature of the problem is, what kinds of trafficking we’re seeing… and without that it’s very difficult to write legislation”
October 18th was Anti-Trafficking Day, so leaders from Durban with an interest or experience in the issue gathered to explore how Christian’s throughout eThekwini (Durban) are responding, and to identify any gaps that we could address together. The Not for Sale campaign against Trafficking, which estimates that, “There are more than 30 million slaves today, more than at any other time in history,” believes that,
“One of the largest challenges facing the fight…is the willingness and capacity for NGOs to work together to assist victims of trafficking and help them recover to the point that they can become survivors instead.”
Soul Action’s Network is making a commitment to one another to work together.
Senior Public Prosecutor Val Melis, sharing some of her ideas on how to address the issue of HT during a time of group discussion.