Confronted with the grim repercussions of the ongoing refugee crisis, the AIRE Centre aims to ensure incoming victims of trauma are treated humanely when they enter the EU. The organisation has launched a new training kit designed to help emergency workers and frontline volunteers identify victims of human trafficking today in the European Parliament.
Markella Papadouli, Registered European Lawyer and Legal Project Manager, said the incompetence of frontline workers and messy bureaucratic procedures can land affected individuals in further labor exploitation and sexual abuse. “While human trafficking for labour and sexual exploitation is now the second most lucrative crime in Europe – after the drugs trade – the level of awareness about how to recognise and protect victims remains alarmingly low,” Papadouli said.
“Only by improving our identification measures can this further abuse be combatted – by setting out our training kitting we believe we are taking a concrete first step to achieving that,” Papadouli stated.
“Upholding Rights: Early Legal Intervention” — a two-year, Commission-funded project — brings together legal experts from Bulgaria, Croatia, Ireland, Lithuania, Scotland and the UK. The alliance seeks to identify best practices for serving the delicate needs of trauma victims, rather than treating them as criminals.
The training kit, which the AIRE Centre calls “groundbreaking,” is expected to educate emergency workers and volunteers using real-life case studies. It will explain the imperativeness of their vigilance concerning this issue, as lack of understanding can lead to retraumatization of victims who are wrongly incarcerated or held in detention centres.