STOP THE TRAFFIK Group had a critical role in influencing the UK government to include Section 54 of the transparency of supply chains into the Modern Slavery Act 2015. We did this knowing and hoping that ‘good law migrates’.
Our way of working is to constantly learn, improve and share what we know to disrupt the traffickers’ business model. Good law learns, refines and extends.
Good law’s success will drive greater challenge to every stakeholder who must take what they know and put it into action to reduce recruitment of people, frustrate the flow of proceeds of crime through our financial systems and decreases the demand online or in person for services, of exploitation and trafficking.
Policy must be intelligence-led and built on evidence of change. STOP THE TRAFFIK Group looks for opportunities to work across our global networks to collaborate in delivering a significant shift forward to disrupt trafficking and this includes good law migrating and maturing.
We are thrilled to see these signs of policy change at the government level within the Canadian and Irish Parliaments, respectively.
First, in the Canadian House of Commons where, in early May, leading new legislation (Bill S-211) was passed, requiring businesses and financial institutions to report annually on the risk of forced labour and exploitative child labour in their supply chains – with significant fines for non-compliance.
Hon. John McKay, Member of Parliament for Scarborough-Guildwood, Ontario, said:
Yesterday, STOP THE TRAFFIK, a world-leading, UK-based anti-trafficking organization had a press release that began, ‘The Canadian Parliament Debate World-Leading Bill.’ I will repeat that for my colleagues, who seem to be a little sceptical. It said, ‘world-leading bill’.
It continues, ‘Canada is now proposing to take this legislative approach much further and to add serious penalties – including fines and direct criminal liability for noncompliance.’ Those people (STOP THE TRAFFIK Group), who are knowledgeable and working abroad, have noticed the work of Canadians working here at home.
As we set out in our statement at the time, we believe this sets a new global in accountability for modern slavery and human trafficking, adding serious penalties for non-compliance.
Secondly, at the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform, Mr Richard Walsh, Director of Industry Collaboration and Innovation at the Banking and Payments Federation Ireland, noted:
To add to that, there is then the detection of fraud using AI. We have just come to the end of a trial that BPFI did with the University of Galway, Bank of Ireland, IBM and a UK not-for-profit called STOP THE TRAFFIK.
It looked to identify evidence of human trafficking in transaction histories. The trial has just concluded. The AI was successfully able to identify 20 new different ways, or collections of red flags, that banks can now look for in real time as transactions occur.
That is something Bank of Ireland is looking to put into its real-time monitoring. AIB is looking at it too, and we want to see which other banks we can do that with. AI could be a powerful tool for real-time detection of behaviours a human eye might not pick up.
These two mentions in the Canadian and Irish Parliaments signify good law getting better. This progress happens when pioneers and leaders work together as a global changing network.
If you would like to find out more about STOP THE TRAFFIK Group and how to get involved with our work, please contact us at [email protected].