Each human being is a free person, whether man, woman, girl or boy, and is destined to exist for the good of all in equality and fraternity. Any relationship that fails to respect the fundamental conviction that all people – men, women, girls and boys – are equal and have the same freedom and dignity constitutes a grave crime against humanity.
Despite the efforts of many, trafficking in human beings – the most extensive form of slavery in our twenty-first century – is a plague on a vast scale in many countries across the world. Victims are hidden away in private homes, in illegal establishments, in factories, on farms, behind closed doors, in families, houses and other places in the cities, villages and slums of the world’s richest and poorest nations. This situation is not improving but, on the contrary, is probably deteriorating.
AIUTA CON UN PICCOLO CONTRIBUTO:
There is now a compelling need to put an end to trafficking in human beings and all forms of exploitation, particularly prostitution, forced labour, the harvesting of human organs and the use of children as drug dealers and in the production of pornographic material, especially on the Internet.
Trafficking in human beings in all its forms, and in particular trafficking for sexual exploitation and prostitution, must be declared a crime against humanity. Traffickers should be prosecuted on the basis of clear international and national laws, including the confiscation of the profits derived from their illegal activities, and the victims ought to be fully compensated from such funds.
All stakeholders, at all levels, have a moral and legal duty to eradicate this grave violation of human rights and strive to ensure that all human beings co-exist in freedom, equality, harmony and peace, in accordance with the values common to our shared humanity. With the support of academics, moral and religious leaders, together with the influence of a global movement and social networks, we must expose these hidden crimes by using today’s technology and working through good and just national and international institutions. It is our moral imperative to make ours the last generation that has to fight the trade in human lives.
We suggest that:
The Holy See
1. Signs and ratifies the 1949 UN Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Persons and of the Exploitation of the Prostitution of Others.
2. Signs and ratifies the 2000 UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (the ‘Palermo Protocol’).
3. Ratifies the 2005 Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings.
4. Commits the Permanent Missions of the Holy See in international organisations to insisting upon the urgency of a global strategy against trafficking in human beings.
5. Encourages the ratification of the International Convention on Migrant Workers (18 December 1990) and the Domestic Workers Convention of the ILO (16 June 2011) and advocates the inclusion of domestic workers and agricultural workers in national labour laws.
6. Promotes a movement to ensure the commitment of the Catholic Church and of all men and women of good will to stopping human trafficking and prostitution; one that is stated in the clearest and most decisive terms.
7. Encourages male religious Orders to work alongside female religious to alleviate the immediate suffering and long-term social exclusion of trafficked persons.
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