On Sunday I was invited on to the BBC Politics Show. It was a pleasure as always to be on the programme. The BBC deserve credit for inviting me and the other guests to discuss sex trafficking – a topic which I feel very strongly about. I was joined by Andrew Boff, a Conservative sitting on the London Assembly, who has produced a new report on the subject.
It was a lively discussion, and Andrew had some interesting points. I have to say I disagreed with him on certain things. Given that 96% of sex trafficking victims are female, I make no bones about the fact that I think women more than men tend to be the victims of modern slavery. I have also seen, in my capacity as an MEP, the global dimension of this problem. Just last month in Ilford a police raid on a brothel revealed Asian women transported to the UK illegally, who were being paid just £5 for sexual services. I see trafficking as a primarily international issue, requiring closer cooperation across EU Member States and beyond.
Having said this I was fascinated by Andrew’s report, and am delighted that politicians across the spectrum are fighting to end modern slavery. All sorts of people can end up being trafficked – men and women, adults and children, people transported within national borders as well as across them.
There is still too little funding and not enough publicity for trafficking. It is therefore vital that politicians work together on the issue.
I’ve uploaded some clips from the show here for you to watch: