Pope Francis meets the anti trafficking & slavery Santa Marta Group.

May 23, 2022

Pope Francis granted an audience to the Santa Marta Group in Rome last week. The Group, which includes international police chiefs, and bishops from across the world are working together to end the crime of human trafficking and modern day slavery.

During the meeting Pope Francis emphasised the importance of using of technology and social media responsibly, highlighting the need for a renewed ethical vision politically, economically, and socially "centred not on profit but on persons."

Thanking the Pope for his leadership the President of the Santa Marta Group, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, highlighted the latest commitments the Group had agreed which included: raising awareness of the reality of modern slavery - including hidden supply chains, and increasing the capacity of all faith communities to work together against this 'abhorrent' crime. The Group also committed to supporting victims of human trafficking and slavery, breaking the financial model of "this monstrous trade", and using confiscated assets for the benefit of victims.

Speaking at Westminster Cathedral during a Mass for the Feast of St Josephine Bakhita earlier this year, Cardinal Vincent warned that the COVID-19 pandemic had created an order of people in distress, poverty, isolation and anxiety – something that ruthless traffickers are quick to exploit. You can read more about this on the Santa Marta website.