ASTRA will, in celebration of the World Day against Trafficking in Persons on 30 July, organize painting of the graffiti with preventive messages against trafficking in persons in three towns – Čačak, Gornji Milanovac and Kraljevo. The graffiti will be painted by artists from Čačak, in cooperation with representatives of the DUK Festival and with the support of Gornji Milanovac Municipality, Kraljevo Municipality, “Takovski ustanak” High School from Gornji Milanovac and the House of Culture in Čačak.
By painting the messages, we wish to inform the wide audience in local communities on the fact that human trafficking is happening in Serbia, that our fellow citizens are being exploited, that human traffickers very well know the needs of the people they are recruiting in order to exploit them and gain profit. This is why we wish to send preventive messages so that people can recognize risky situations and avoid them. This action will raise public awareness of the fact that the dominant form of trafficking is sexual exploitation of women and young girls, but that other deceptive actions are rising, by which our citizens can be exposed to labour exploitation, and those are mostly men. We should altogether be aware that anyone can become a victim of trafficking, even people who are the closest to us.
In recent years, annually around 50 people have been recognized as trafficking victims in the social protection system, but it is estimated that an unofficial number is much higher. According to the official data, in the first six months in 2018, 28 victims of trafficking have been identified. Since ASTRA’s SOS line has been established, 35,000 calls have been received and the assistance has been provided to 502 victims of trafficking in persons. However, ASTRA’s SOS line also has a preventive function. Therefore, 1/3 of the calls have come from citizens who check on employment offers in the country and abroad.
We all are responsible and we all can contribute to reduce the number of victims of human trafficking and prevent this global problem. Use the information to prevent, use the report of suspicion of trafficking to help and support.