The Foundation and its trustees, in particular Anthony Steen and Lady Butler-Sloss, have been actively involved in the setting up of cross-party groups in the devolved administrations, which mirror the Westminster APPG. There are now 4 active cross-party groups across the UK, which are committed to:
- raising awareness about the scourge of human trafficking;
- passing better and more comprehensive legislation to properly define the crime of human trafficking;
- improving victims’ services through a fairer, more accountable national referral mechanism;
- increasing the number of human trafficking prosecutions and convictions.
Our aim is to promote effective communications and networking across these groups, ensuring that their agendas reflect the political concerns of key stakeholders working on the ground, often in close contact with the victims.
The establishment of a cross-party group at Holyrood, which held its inaugural meeting on the 26 April 2012, was a significant step forward. The group is being serviced by the International Justice Mission UK, having had initial support from the Foundation. For more information about the group, please visit the Scottish Parliament's website.
The Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Scotland) Bill was introduced on 11th December 2014, after a successful campaign by Jenny Marra MSP to persuade the Scottish government to take up the cause. For further information as to the progress of the Bill, please click here.
There has been a Welsh Assembly Cross Party Group on Human Trafficking (CPGHT) in Wales since 2009 but, in 2012, at the suggestion of the Foundation, the group re-launched its commitment to the fight against modern day slavery, which was warmly welcomed by the sector. For more information about the CPGHT, please visit the National Assembly for Wales' website.
Northern Ireland (Stormont)
The All-Party Group on Human Trafficking (APGHT) Northern Ireland was launched on 15 May 2012 with the support of the Foundation and in particular on the advice of one of our trustees, Lady Butler-Sloss. The group is currently very active. Meetings are held each month to promote effective actions against human trafficking across Ireland. For more information about the APGHT, please visit the Northern Ireland Assembly's website.
The Human Trafficking and Exploitation (Criminal Justice and Support for Victims) Act (Northern Ireland) 2015 received Royal Assent on 13th January 2015. Please click here to see the final copy of the Act.