Report on the Event on Human Trafficking at the European Parliament

On the 17th October, at the Members’ Salon of the European Parliament, WYA Europe celebrated with Care for Europe the 5th EU Anti-Trafficking Day in an evening event which also marked the first anniversary of the adoption of the EU Directive on Human Trafficking one year ago, following the plenary vote on the Bauer and Hedh report by the European Parliament. Hosted by MEPs Christian Busoi (Romania, ALDE) and Peter Van Dalen (The Netherlands, ECR), the event led to a lively discussion and cocktail and was attended by several other members of the Parliament, EP assistants, officials from European Commission as well as several representatives from various NGOs.

The evening began with very informative and compelling presentations by the NGOs which work in the field with trafficked women: “Reaching out Romania” and “Scharlaken Koord”. Further to their shocking testimony from the field, that included reports on the situation in the Redlight District in Amsterdam, a representative International Justice Mission explained its work on bringing criminals to courts and outlined the state of the play globally. All participants were absorbed by the stories of the girls, whose dignity have been so violently violated and were keenly involved in the discussions that followed, leading to concrete conclusions for actions at the EU level. They were especially concerned with the incompleteness in service provision to victims of trafficking, the lack of perpetrator accountability across Europe and the lack of coordination with other connected policies.

WYA hopes that this will turn into further cooperation between European Commission, European Parliament and the NGOs to better protect the dignity of women in such situations and work toward the eradication of concerned human rights abuses. The advocacy team in particular will follow up on the issue with all agents involved, with the aim to help further progress happen on the matter.