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Disrupting Criminal Business: The Fight Against Human Trafficking

By July 4, 2023July 26th, 2023News, Top Story
Senior Project Officer, VSE
4 Jul 2023 
VSE Project News

In an unwavering commitment to combat labor exploitation and human trafficking, a formidable coalition of European organisations has come together to launch the INVERT project. As part of the European Multidisciplinary Platform Against Criminal Threats (EMPACT) key EU priorities, INVERT sets out to disrupt the financial underpinnings of criminal traffickers and intensify the fight against this harrowing crime.

A Grave Issue Demanding Urgent Action

Labor exploitation, an integral aspect of Trafficking in Human Beings (THB), remains a top priority for EMPACT’s efforts to dismantle serious and organised crime across Europe and the world. The alarming numbers from the third EU report (2020) on progress in combating human trafficking underscore the gravity of the situation. Between 2017 and 2018, EU Member States reported a staggering 14,145 victims of human trafficking, with 15% of them suffering from labor exploitation. Furthermore, an appalling quarter of all victims in the EU were children, making child trafficking a heart-wrenching concern.

INVERT Project: Pioneering Change

Against this backdrop, the European Union recently gave the green light to the INVERT project – Identifying compaNies and Victims in the Exploitation Phase to disRupt the financial business model of adult and child labor Trafficking. Spearheading this crucial initiative is Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (UCSC), partnering with six other prominent European Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and Institutions from Italy, Hungary, and Belgium.

A Promising Inauguration Meeting

On 04 July 2023, the INVERT Project inauguration meeting took place in Milan, Italy, where partners convened both in person and online. The consortium set its sights on effectively managing and implementing a comprehensive array of project deliverables, including:

– Identification of risk indicators for adult and child labor exploitation.
– Design and development of the prototype INVERT suite – a cutting-edge tool for combatting trafficking.
– Training prosecutor offices and law enforcement agencies to boost their capabilities in tackling the crime.
– Rigorous testing and validation of the prototype INVERT suite in both general and organised crime-affected environments.
– Dissemination, Communication, and Exploitation of project results to raise awareness and inspire further action.

A Collaborative Commitment

With all project tasks and activities carefully reviewed, the consortium embraced a spirit of collaboration and mutual support to achieve INVERT’s overarching objective. By establishing an open communication channel, the partners aim to fortify their collective efforts, harnessing the power of unity in the fight against labor exploitation and human trafficking.

As the INVERT project embarks on its transformative journey, hopes are high that this concerted endeavour will strike a major blow against the criminals responsible for the inhumane trade in human lives. The coalition stands steadfast, armed with determination and innovation, ready to disrupt criminal business and protect the most vulnerable among us.

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