ONU Femmes - Entité des Nations Unies pour l’égalité des sexes et l’autonomisation des femmes

UN Women statement on the occasion of the first World Day against Trafficking in Persons

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Date: 30 July 2014

Author(s): UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka

Today, on 30 July 2014, we commemorate the first World Day against Trafficking in Persons.

Trafficking in persons is a grave human rights violation and a serious crime. It affects millions of people worldwide. The majority are women and girls.

This cruel trade is also commonly associated with other violations, including sexual exploitation, forced marriage, bonded labour and slavery.

Those most vulnerable to being trafficked often belong to already marginalized and disadvantaged communities including migrants, asylum-seekers, refugees and stateless persons.

The injustice and brutality suffered by trafficked persons is immeasurable. These crimes shatter lives, families and dreams.

The international community must work together to protect the human rights and dignity of trafficked persons, as well as to prosecute perpetrators.

To prevent trafficking, we must address its root causes and the factors that increase individuals’ vulnerability to trafficking, including poverty, unemployment, poor access to education and continued gender inequality.

The specific needs of women and girls must be addressed, including through measures to empower them.

We must redouble our efforts to stamp out trafficking in persons, to return hope to those who have suffered this injustice and to build a future where these crimes no longer threaten any person, anywhere.