A Portadown group – ‘Freedom Acts’ – has been working non-stop over the past three years to counteract the growing problem of human trafficking “and virtual slavery” operating in the town.
It is part of the overall Craigavon Intercultural Programme and its project co-ordinator Mel Wiggins said that the discovery of the 20 Romanians being exploited within the food industry comes as no surprise to the group.
“The ruthless exploitation isn’t confined to the foreign nationals population,” said Mel. “So many people – locals and migrants – are being lured into this slavery trade. There is a myth abroad that it is purely sexual, geared towards females and purely foreign nationals and that is not the case.”
Sexuality is just part of it. In the case of the 20 Romanians rescued by the PSNI, 14 were men, with the suspicion that it was a case of forced labour
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