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HomeNewsLuke Stanley: EU fosters Britain’s appalling trade in human lives

Luke Stanley: EU fosters Britain’s appalling trade in human lives


When Britain joined the EEC – the EU’s forerunner in 1973, the Great British Public were duped into thinking our membership was necessary so we could gain free access to the vital ‘common market’, now ’ single market’. Over a decade of free movement of people with Eastern Europe, however, has created what in effect is an area where human beings can be enslaved and trafficked from one country to another.

Damning figures in a report by Eurostat this week reveal over 4,000 human trafficking victims were registered in Britain between 2010 and 2012. The number of victims registered in Britain in 2011 was the largest number in the EU, and was over six times the number registered in 2010, showing an alarming increase. This is the latest data available, but it is already three years out of date.

Most worryingly of all, this rise in Britain is just the tip of the iceberg. Frighteningly, it does not take into account what is sure to be an even greater increase in Britain since our border controls with Bulgaria and Romania have been relaxed. These two EU countries consistently had both the largest number of nationals engaging in human trafficking, together with the largest number of victims, relative to their population size.

The victims of human trafficking in Britain can be broadly split into two categories – sexual exploitation and labour exploitation. Sexual exploitation makes up the largest portion (33 per cent), whilst labour exploitation comes second (25 per cent). This divide is largely along gender lines, with 97 per cent of sex victims here being female and 88 per cent of forced labour victims male.

Interestingly, just 4 per cent of the victims in Britain are British nationals, suggesting the EU’s free movement of people is to blame. By opening our borders to countries such as Hungary and the Netherlands, where human trafficking is more prevalent in relation to population size, we have opened our country up to this appalling trade in people’s lives. The Eurostat report itself confirms this by pointing out the overwhelming majority (65 per cent) of victims in the EU were trafficked from another EU Member State.

Aside from opening our borders, the EU is also partly to blame for the numbers entering Britain from countries outside the EU as well. Among the top ten non-EU countries of origin for traffickers operating inside the EU between 2010 and 2012 were Albania, Brazil and Serbia. All three of these countries have visa agreements with the EU allowing their citizens to travel freely across Europe.

These skyrocketing figures in Britain are not likely to abate any time soon. Rather than taking effective measures to curb this trade, the EU Commission seems determined to increase it. In its relentless quest to control all European territory from the Straits of Gibraltar to the Ural Mountains, Brussels is keen to extend EU membership to some of the worst offenders, such as Albania, Serbia and worst of all Turkey. Free movement of people with these countries would be a disaster – regardless of the implications. By ignoring the problem of human rights abuses, the Eurocrats show just how little they sympathise with the plight of these victims, whose lives are often irreparably damaged.

Ironically, this damning report was released on the same day as a European Commission command for Britain to adopt a new protocol to the Forced Labour Convention, requiring us to “take effective measures to prevent and eliminate” forced labour.

The report has shown the best way for Britain to take preventative measures to eliminate forced male labour and the enslavement of women for sex is to Get Britain Out of the EU as soon as possible. Only by leaving the EU and preventing these monsters from entering Britain will we be able to effectively safeguard the Great British Public.

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Luke Stanley
Luke Stanley
Luke Stanley is a Research Executive at Get Britain Out

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