World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

In 1932, at the time of the first attempts to combat trafficking on the international level, Nina Boyle wrote: "In much of the world the right to dispose of (women) from infancy onwards, for profit, pleasure or other advantage, is a clear matter." The author argued that in many countries governments boasted of achieving the abolition of slavery, while silence fell over the trade in women and girls. More than a century later, trafficking retains its character as a highly significant and lucrative transnational criminal activity. More than 20 million people around the world are victims of modern slavery, compelled into forced labor, seen as an organ resource or sexually exploited. Women and children are the most affected victims, 66% and 13% respectively. In addition, the numbers increase for sexual exploitation, of which 98% of victims are women and girls. Men, on the other hand, are more likely to end up in labor intensive chains.

Human trafficking is a crime and a serious violation of human rights. Every year thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. Almost every country in the world is affected by trafficking, both as countries of origin and as countries of transit or destination for victims.

EU countries reported 14,145 victims of trafficking in the period between 2017 and 2018, 72% of whom were women and girls. According to a European Commission report, Italy ranks second in the EU-27 for the number of victims. Child victims of trafficking represent 22% of the registered victims. However, the real figure could be much higher, given the absence of consistent and comparable data. In addition, more than half of the registered victims were trafficked for sexual exploitation. Fifteen percent of victims were brought in for other types of forced labor and the other 15 percent for forced begging, organ harvesting or domestic servitude.

The European Union is working to prevent and combat human trafficking with action on the ground and collaboration at the local and international levels. The prohibition of human trafficking is expressed in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (Art. 5.3) and countering the phenomenon is one of the most important priorities of the Union. In fact, a comprehensive approach has been conceived and put into practice to prevent human trafficking, prosecute criminals, protect victims and establish partnerships. All of this is linked to the European Union's Anti-Trafficking Directive, invoking and putting into action the motto "Together Against Human Trafficking."

Gender-specific human trafficking is also recognized by the EU, which means that the assistance and support measures provided by the EU must also be gender-specific. In addition, the vulnerability of children cannot be ignored and highlights the importance of prevention and protection of child victims and potential victims.

The will to eradicate human trafficking has been strengthened by the European Union's Action Plan for Human Rights and Democracy 2020-2024, which poses particular challenges to the implementation and protection of human rights and the fight for European values and interests.

At the international level, the General Assembly of the United Nations Organization adopted in 2010 a Global Plan of Action to Combat Human Trafficking and urged governments of all countries to take coordinated and consistent action to defeat this form of violence.

Trafficking in persons is now strongly combated thanks to the multilevel protection established as a result of adherence to international conventions and supranational bodies. The UNODC, as custodian of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and its protocols, assists States in their efforts to implement the Protocol to prevent, suppress and punish trafficking in persons.

Despite this, human trafficking remains one of the fastest growing crimes to date. New technologies, migration flows, and the crisis triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic are creating new risks and challenges for the international community as a whole in fighting this new form of slavery to be eradicated worldwide.

Translated by Francesca Cioffi

Original version by Valeriana Savino

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  • L'Autore

    Valeriana Savino


    Valeriana Savino è una giovane studentessa di 24 anni. Nata e cresciuta in Puglia. È laureata in Scienze Politiche, Relazioni Internazionali e Studi Europei presso l’Università degli Studi di Bari “Aldo Moro”.

    Attualmente frequenta il corso di laurea magistrale in Scienze delle Amministrazioni. Ritiene fortemente che il primo cambiamento necessario per il prossimo futuro sia dare un contributo attivo alla gestione dei servizi pubblici e privati.

    Ha collaborato per tre anni con l’associazione “Giovani nel Mondo” alla promozione del festival delle carriere internazionali. La promozione consisteva nell’organizzare incontri sia in italiano sia in inglese con gli studenti, conferenze con ospiti nazionali e internazionali e fornire informazioni sul festival.

    Da agosto 2019 collabora con l’associazione “Mondo Internazionale”. È autrice nell’area tematica “Diritti Umani” ed “Europa” nell’ambito di Mondo Internazionale Academy. Da novembre 2020 collabora come Policy Analist nell’analisi, ricerca e redazione di politiche pubbliche portate avanti da Mondo Internazionale Hub all’interno di MIPP, l’Incubatore di Politiche Pubbliche.

    È appassionata di diritti umani e di questioni relative all’Europa e non solo. Ascolta podcast per essere sempre aggiornata sul mondo attuale e nel tempo libero leggo libri e guardo serie TV.

    Ama viaggiare, scoprire nuove realtà e mettersi sempre alla prova.


    Valeriana Savino is a young 24 years old. She is born and raised in Puglia. She has a BA in Political Science, International Relations and European Studies at the University of Bari "Aldo Moro".

    She is currently attending the master's degree in Administration Sciences. She strongly believes that the first necessary change for the near future is to make an active contribution to the management of public and private services.

    She collaborated for three years with the "Giovani nel Mondo" association to promote the internationale career festival. The promotion consisted of organizing meetings both in Italian and in English with students, conferences with national and international guests and providing information on the festival.

    Since August 2019 she has been collaborating with the "Mondo Internazionale" association. She is an author in the thematic area "Human Rights" and "Europe" within the Mondo Internazionale Academy. Since November 2020 she has been collaborating as a Policy Analist in the analysis, research and drafting of public policies carried out by Mondo Internazionale Hub within MIPP, the Public Policy Incubator.

    She is passionate about human rights and issues relating to Europe and beyond. She listens to podcasts to keep up to date on the current world and in free time she reads books and watch TV series.

    She loves to travel, discover new realities and always test herself.


From the World Sections Culture Human Rights International Organizations


#humanbeing #human #rights #internationalday #mondointernazionale

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World Day Against Trafficking in Persons

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