World Cup 'hotbed for traffickers'

SALVATION Army social justice commission director Christine MacMillan says events such as the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup are hotbeds for human trafficking.

SALVATION Army social justice commission director Christine MacMillan says events such as the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup are hotbeds for human trafficking.

MacMillan said world sporting events are generally attended by men who are away from home and consume large quantities of alcohol.

"Sex is something they want, so the link between these events and human trafficking is obvious," she said.

The Salvation Army has appealed to the government to pass the Human Trafficking Bill, which will make human trafficking a criminal offence, before the World Cup kicks off next June.

"In Sweden the law prohibiting human trafficking was passed in 1999. And at the Fifa World Cup in Germany, Swedish men did not avail themselves of human traffickers because of this law in their own country," MacMillan said.

Marieke Venter, coordinator of the Salvation Army anti-trafficking task team, said unemployment results in "people in rural areas believing anything promised to them because they are desperate and therefore vulnerable".

"We hope to create a greater level of awareness against human traffickers," she said.

To report human trafficking the International Organisation for Migration can be contacted on 0800 555 999 toll free.

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