On September 27, Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, the Holy See’s Secretary for Relations with States and Head of Delegation to the General Debate of the 72nd Session of the General Assembly of the United Nations, gave an intervention during the Plenary Session of the High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on the appraisal of the United Nations Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons.
In his statement, Archbishop Gallagher said that since the adoption of the Global Plan of Action in 2010, the problem of human trafficking has worsened, but the resources to combat the problem have also grown. He appraised the Global Plan of Action by means of its “four Ps”: preventing trafficking, protecting victims, prosecuting traffickers, and promoting partnerships to fight trafficking. On prevention, he praised greater educational campaigns and the focus on eliminating the demand for the exploitation of others, but called for a frank and courageous examination of practices like pornography and prostitution that drive such demand. On the protection and assistance of victims, he praised the recognition that victims are not perpetrators of crime but called for greater awareness of the long-term investment needed to rehabilitate survivors. On prosecution, he lauded advances in adequate legal instruments, but said that traffickers still work with too much impunity. On partnerships, he praised the Santa Marta Group and Talitha Kum as models and mentioned Pope Francis’ call for a mobilization and solidarity commensurate to the dimensions of the trafficking scourge.
The statement can be found here.