What can we do?

Workers or Slaves? Human Trafficking and World Poverty

Human trafficking and slavery are problems of global proportions, driven by poverty, unsafe migration and the neglect of human rights standards. It is a crime that has risen to become the third most profitable transnational organized crime, after drugs and arms.

Tens of millions of people around the globe are enslaved in forced labour, bonded labour, sexual servitude and involuntary servitude at any given time. To date most legislation, research, projects and prosecution cases have focused on trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation, while human trafficking for other exploitative purposes have not been given much attention.

Human trafficking and slavery occurs in our neighbourhood and affects women and children - as well as men, who are often ignored in domestic legislation. In South and South East Asia, these problems are particularly acute. Trafficking victims are often considered to be illegal migrants and so are detained, fined and deported with little regard to their human rights.

How can Australia take the lead to prevent human trafficking, protect survivors and bring the perpetrators to justice?


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  • Venue Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Brisbane,
  • Date & time 11/05/2009 6:00:00 PM