Santa Marta Group and diocesan Social Action team meeting on Human Trafficking and Modern-Day Slavery

July 8, 2024

8 members of the Social Action Committee, including Canon Kieron O'Brien, smile at the camera, with Miriam and Katrina from the Santa Marta Group.
Members of the diocesan Social Action Committee,
with Miriam and Katerina from the Santa Marta Group

People from across our Diocese attended an extremely thought-provoking presentation on Human Trafficking and Modern-Day Slavery on Saturday, delivered by two members of the Santa Marta Group (SMG), Miriam and Katerina. The meeting, held at St Peter's Catholic Church in Shoreham-on-Sea, began with Mass celebrated by Bishop Richard, with the presentation and subsequent group discussions taking place in the adjacent church hall.

The illegal and immoral trading of children, women, and men for the purposes of modern slavery and human trafficking is increasing year on year across the world, with the criminal trading of human beings now an estimated US$236 billion industry. Described by Pope Francis as "blood money", the Santa Marta Group's anti-trafficking and slavery strategy aims to change the current pattern of impunity and profit to one of justice for victims, by creating environments where modern slavery and human trafficking is combatted through proactive prevention.

Speaking about the event, a representative of the diocesan Social Action Committee said:

"It was great to meet members of the Santa Marta Group in person and find out more about their important work first hand. Attendees explored a range of contexts during the presentation, including modern-day slavery and human trafficking in agriculture, domestic service, car washes and for the purposes of sexual exploitation. I would definitely recommend SMG's resources to people and groups keen to raise awareness of this terrible crime in their local context."

To access a range of resources from SMG including digital media, downloads and speeches, click here and visit their website.

To find out more about Social Action work in our Diocese, click here to visit our website.