The Destination Unknown campaign took the fight against child trafficking to the highest levels of the British royal family last week, as we met to discuss the issue with HRH the Prince of Wales.
Pierre Cazenave, from Destination Unknown campaign leader Terre des Hommes (TDH), explained to Prince Charles how both the UK and other European countries need to work together to protect children from modern day slavery and bring traffickers to justice – using the 20 years of experience TDH has in the field.
Pierre explained the importance of ensuring legal mechanisms and services in countries both across Europe and beyond, especially when thousands of children at risk of falling into the hands of traffickers are stranded across Greece and the Western Balkans. He also explained how without a robust pan-European response to trafficking within countries where child refugees first enter Europe, states including the UK must instead provide technical and financial support to European countries where human traffickers operate.
The Prince of Wales was also told how modern day slavery within product supply chains needed to be tackled, and how multinationals – including those working in the UK – needed to ensure their practices did not put children at risk of being trafficked or exploit them in any way.
We also thanked Prince Charles and the British government for committing to play a pivotal role in eradicating child trafficking and dangerous child labour, and we also committed to support any governmental or private initiative which helped to stamp out these scourges to children on the move within Europe.
The Prince of Wales met with TDH after the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Alliance against Trafficking in Persons annual conference. The conference focused on child trafficking, and how children’s best interests should be at the core of the decisions affecting them.