‘World Day Against Trafficking in Persons’
Each year tens of thousands of men, women and children fall victim to human trafficking and end up trapped unable to escape or find a way out. They are often tricked and mislead into believing that they are being taken for job opportunities, education, a better life, or through force, abduction. The outcomes in all these cases is the same – the children and adults trafficked lose their rights, their identity and are abused for labour and sexual exploitation.
Since 2013, the UN-initiated ‘World Day Against Trafficking in Persons’ is observed on 30th July every year. It aims to raise awareness to combat cross border and in-country human trafficking.
To commemorate this global day, the British High Commission participated in a rally organised by Kolkata Mary Ward Social Centre (KMWSC) at Canning, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal today.
Talking about the ‘World Day Against Trafficking in Persons’, the Deputy High Commissioner, British High Commission in Kolkata, Mr Bruce Bucknell said: “I’m pleased to be here today to support efforts in raising awareness to tackle the issue of human trafficking.” He went on to say: “We should use days such as this – World Day Against Trafficking in Persons – to highlight the dangers of trafficking across communities. We need everyone to come together to tackle the dangers that trafficking poses and protect the human rights of all concerned.”
Since 2015, KMWSC the social development wing of the Loreto Sisters has worked in the area of anti-human trafficking i.e. one of the key source areas of human trafficking in Canning 1 Block. They have expanded its area of work in Diamond Harbour Block-1 with support from British Deputy High Commission. “I am here because promoting human rights is part of my work. Tackling human trafficking, bonded and forced labour and exploitation is an important priority and one that my country, the UK is committed to helping eradicate. And we are pleased to support efforts by Kolkata Mary Ward Centre through a project to train community leaders to help prevent child trafficking specifically in high vulnerability areas,” said Mr Bucknell.
The Deputy High Commissioner, Mr Bucknell thanked Ananya Chakraborti, Chairperson, West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Govt. of West Bengal and other senior administrative and police officials of the district, for attending and showing their support.
Ms Ananya Chakraborti, Chairperson, West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Rights said: “We need to empower our daughters to tackle the problem of human trafficking. Our daughters are not burden on us. They are capable of being successful and helping their parents. You should counsel your daughters that there are laws against domestic violence and if your married daughters are facing it in their in-laws’ house, you should be able to take legal steps. There are all kinds of legal frameworks available to tackle human trafficking.”
Mr Bucknell, Ms Chakraborti and other senior administrative and police officials of the district also participated in a mass rally in Canning that saw active participation from women and children, civic volunteers and youth from the community. Mr Bucknell added: “I hope events such as today will help push efforts across all fronts to generate more awareness on how to stay safe, promote community engagement, and empower people to raise concerns and work with authorities to address the dangers.”
*Old File Photo*