Stephanie Linus advocates against human trafficking in Italy
Nollywood actress Stephanie Linus is currently in Italy to advocate against human trafficking in the wake of the increased rate of human trafficking being experienced by Nigerians trying to migrate to Europe via Libya. The movie star is giving her support to those rescued and raising her voice against such human rights violations.
Stephanie’s mission which is considered a timely intervention is in partnership with international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders (MSF)
Over the next few days, Stephanie Linus will visit the rescue ship “Aquarius” to witness their activities and operations. Later she will have meetings with some of these women; participate in rehabilitation exercises for the rescued women, media parleys and stakeholder meetings with the aim of alleviating their sufferings and preventing more girls and women from falling prey.
Doctors Without Borders is one of the most impactful humanitarian organisation that rescues thousands of people who faced hazardous conditions trying to enter Europe through the sea yearly. In 2017, the Aquarius (a rescue ship) has rescued 15,078 people.
Mrs Linus has been at the forefront of advocacy over sensitive issues that affect the rights of women and girls. She has done this through several channels such as her advocacy movie – DRY, her role as UNFPA Ambassador; her charity organisation Extended Hands Foundation and many more.
According to wikipedia, Italy is a destination and transit country for women, children, and men trafficked transnationally for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation and forced labour. Women and children are trafficked mainly from Nigeria, Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine, Russia, East Africa, China and Uzbekistan.
According to reports, an increasing number of victims are trafficked for labor, mostly in the agricultural sector. Many foreign seasonal workers are unregistered and two-thirds are in Italy illegally, rendering them vulnerable to trafficking.
The top five source countries for agricultural workers are Romania, Pakistan, Albania, and Ivory Coast. Traffickers reportedly are moving victims more frequently within Italy, often keeping victims in major cities for only a few months at a time, in an attempt to evade police detection.
Even though the government of Italy fully complies with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, these traffickers are daring in their illegal business. Italian government has aggressively prosecuted and convicted traffickers and continued to implement its progressive victim-centered approach for the rescue, reintegration, and repatriation of trafficking victims in Italy.