In support of the United Nations World Day Against Trafficking in Persons – the Airports Council International (ACI) World and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) have emphasised their joint commitment and work to help combat human trafficking.
Both associations said that aviation connects the world, carrying more than four billion passengers a year, but this global network is also used “!nefariously by traffickers to transport people against their will”.
And IATA and ACI, said airlines and airports are both determined to assist authorities by reporting suspected human trafficking cases, and making it as difficult as possible for the global air transport network to be exploited for this evil trade, which affects some 25 million people annually.
The industry they said is committed to raising awareness, helping to train staff to recognize the signs of trafficking, and putting in place reporting protocols to alert the appropriate authorities.
IATA’s Director General and chief executive officer, Alexandre de Juniac said: “Human trafficking creates misery for millions, and helps fund criminal gangs and terrorism. Aviation is the business of freedom. And we are taking action to help authorities ensure that our global network is not exploited for evil ends.
“As an industry, we have our eyes open, and are working with governments and law enforcement to stop trafficking. Through a joint campaign with our airport colleagues, we hope to further mobilize the aviation industry in the fight against this abhorrent trade in people’s lives.”
ACI Worl director general, Angela Gittens added: “People trafficking is an appalling crime which we should do all we can to combat. The safety and security of passengers remains all airports’ number one priority and the airport community is determined to work with border authorities and our partners across the world in helping to put a stop to this activity.
“We stand together with our airline colleagues in keeping our eyes open to the signs of human trafficking. Many of our airport members are already demonstrating their commitment to the campaign. We continue to strengthen our combined efforts in awareness, training, and reporting.”