Human trafficking threat

Chand. Picture: REINAL CHAND

Chand. Picture: REINAL CHAND

FIJI is still vulnerable to human trafficking so people need to be cautious and vigilant about their surroundings, says Nadi-based police officer Assistant Superintendent of Police Shiu Chand.

While speaking during the “My freedom day” seminar at the University of Fiji Saweni campus yesterday, ASP Chand said the threat of human trafficking was real in Fiji even though there were not many cases reported to police.

“The best thing to do is to keep creating awareness about the crime that is real and exists in Fiji,” he said.

“People in our rural and urban communities have to be aware of their surroundings and the people who come into their areas insisting that they are there to help or have a business proposition for them,” he said.

“We have to know when a person is being genuine or they are there to take advantage of you.

“Sometimes we have tourists coming in and they are visiting remote areas and people welcome them with open arms, but some of us tend to overlook their intentions.

“We need to create more awareness about it and we need to talk about this with our family members who live in our rural communities.”

He said women and children were the most vulnerable to crimes such as human trafficking and prostitution.

“They are the most vulnerable of our society and they are the main targets of people who commit these crimes.”

Fiji’s first human trafficking prosecution was recorded in 2010.

“My freedom day” (#myfreedomday) is an initiative spearheaded by American news network CNN aimed at educating students on modern day slavery.

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