'The British Government's attitude towards victims of trafficking is deeply regrettable', UK Green MEP, Jean Lambert, told the European Parliament when they voted to adopt a wide ranging report feeding into the EU Commission's action plan to end human trafficking.
Jean, who is London's Green MEP, has continued to campaign for the rights of victims of trafficking and welcomed today's comprehensive report which looks at all dimensions of trafficking, not just that of sexual exploitation.
"Of those countries signed up to the EU's initiative for short term residents permits, designed with vicitims of trafficking in mind, only 2 have put this into practice and only 6 have started official proceedings. The EU Commission now has no alternative but to take action against those failing. Embarrasingly though this can not include the Britsih Government as they have not even agreed to the initiative." Jean commented.
"The British Government continue to see victims of trafficking as illegal immigrants, not victims of crime, and treat them as such. Until this attitude changes the pilot projects they are running offering support to victims, while welcome, simply wont have the required impact.
"It is vital that we end and / or disrupt the slave like conditions many victims of trafficking find themselves in. Today's report takes us one step closer to achieving that goal."
For more information please contact:
Morwenna Holland, Media Officer
tel: 020 7407 6280 or 07813149812
Notes to editors:
Jean Lambert: In October 2005 Jean was named MEP 2005 for Justice and Human Rights. Jean was first elected Green Party Member of the European Parliament for London in the 1999 European elections. She was re-elected in 2004. She is one of nine MEPs representing London and one of two UK Green representatives in the European Parliament.