BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – Barbados has launched its national task force for the prevention of trafficking in persons by re-committing a pledge to intensify its efforts to mininise the scourge of human trafficking.
“We remain committed to this task, since we have, over the years, accepted our responsibility as a member of the international community. We will, therefore, continue our efforts towards strengthening our capacity, to put an end to this human scourge,” said Family, Culture, Sports and Youth Minister Stephen Lashley.
Acknowledging that the act of human trafficking had reduced women, children and men over the world to “mere slaves, sexual slaves, and domestic servitude,” Lashley said that in many cases, some people have made the ultimate sacrifice, “as we have heard of incidences where organs have been ripped from the innocent bodies of persons to be sold on the market”.
He said the government is putting measures in place to combat trafficking in persons and that “since 2002, the Bureau of Gender Affairs has been our leading agency in coordinating Government’s response to trafficking in persons, (hence) working with non-governmental agencies and other ministries of government, to build public awareness around the issue of human trafficking”.
Programme Officer at the Bureau, Nalita Gajadhar, said that the launch was significant as it “goes beyond just the establishment of a Committee, or the establishment of another talk group, but is the start of a process to bring about change in our country”.
Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs, Adriel Brathwaite, who is chairing the Task Force said “the establishment of the Committee signaled to our members, to Barbados and to our international partners that we are truly committed to ensuring that we do our utmost to address this whole issue of human trafficking.
“Even though we have only had one meeting, I recognise that in fact much work and much knowledge has already gone into this activity…Barbados and our international partners will see a much more coordinated effort with respect to the whole issue of human trafficking,” he added.