Every three seconds, somewhere around the world a man, women, or child, has unwillingly been forced into the human trafficking network, and has been bought or sold for a price.

Disheartening as this is in the continuing fight against human trafficking, it’s the everyday reality for millions of people.

Human Trafficking is fast becoming the world’s most illegally profitable crime; in the UK alone thousands of victims are being sold every year to places such as car washes, farms, factories, brothels, and the fishing industry.

The 30th of July has been marked by the UN on their International Calendar as the day to raise awareness of trafficking across the UK and around the world. It is an opportunity to educate ourselves and mobilise our communities to stand against trafficking:

“On this World Day against Trafficking in Persons, let us reaffirm our commitment to stop criminals from ruthlessly exploiting people for profit and to help victims rebuild their lives.” — UN Secretary-General António Guterres

There are many, many ways that we can get involved in the fight to stop this happening, not only in our towns, but globally.

One: Think about what we buy from where.

If a price on an item is ‘too good to be true’, it probably is. Question its authenticity and production history. Check your ‘Slavery Footprint’, ask where your clothes really came from and check the Department of Labour’s list of goods produced by child labour or forced labour.

Two: Learn the signs.

Look out for signs of trafficked persons in your community. Read Hope for Justices’ list of things to look out for , or search the Police Scotland Website.

Three: Learn more.

There are a number of people who can talk to your community or church event about the experiences of trafficking.  Hear real stories, learn about global rescue and prevention efforts and learn how you can support through prayer and awareness raising.

Look out for Action of Churches’ Together Annual Conference, ‘Selling Out to Slavery’ on the 2nd of November 2019 in Edinburgh, where the UK Anti-Slavery Commissioner will be in attendance. Find more information on their Facebook page here and book your place.

If you are interested in inviting a speaker or learning more contact Rebecca Erskine for resources which include bible studies, a study of our partners work against trafficking, and a useful leaflet to keep in your back pocket or circulate around your community.