June 25, 2022

Do you believe EVERYONE’s health matters?

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We hope for good health for you and your loved ones. Because if there’s anything the last two years have taught us it’s the importance of our health.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us it’s a privilege to have the means and opportunities to look after our health: to be to take precautionary measures, to test ourselves, to isolate when needed, to seek medical assistance…  

But not everyone is so lucky. Many people from systematically marginalized groups, including those experiencing and recovering from trafficking, were and still are left unprotected from the pandemic. 
Stand with trafficking survivors

Research has confirmed that trafficking victims are at a greater risk of catching the coronavirus.[1] People in industries particularly vulnerable to exploitation such as construction, sex work, harvesting and manufacturing aren’t always able to maintain social distancing to protect themselves and if a victim of modern slavery, don’t have the choice to stop working and self-isolate if they need to.  

The findings show that unscrupulous employers often fail to provide basic safeguards even in normal times, so personal protective equipment, such as masks and hand sanitizer, was not available for many trafficking victims.[2] 

It is also common for modern slavery victims to live in overcrowded accommodation, where the risk of infection is higher.  

Speak up for their health
Access to decent healthcare should be a universal right. And yet, so many people are denied this basic human right. Millions of migrant people, including many modern slavery victims, are among those who have had to live through a global pandemic without being able to seek medical attention.  

That’s because in many countries, having irregular migration status leaves you unable to access public healthcare – many trafficking victims are in this position.  

Even when eligible, research has shown how many people have avoided seeking healthcare due to the fear that their details would be passed on to law enforcement. They worry this could lead to them being detained and deported.[4] 
Call out healthcare injustice
Everyone deserves to be able to receive help and support when they get sick, including people trapped in situations of modern slavery. If you agree, sign this petition today and call on governments to ensure healthcare is safe and accessible for everyone.   

In solidarity, Monica  
 Monica Burns
Freedom United Campaigner
[1] https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/The_effects_of_the_COVID-19_pandemic_on_trafficking_in_persons.pdf[2] https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/The_effects_of_the_COVID-19_pandemic_on_trafficking_in_persons.pdf  [3] https://www.infomigrants.net/en/post/26355/germanys-exploited-foreign-workers-amid-coronavirus [4] https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/The_effects_of_the_COVID-19_pandemic_on_trafficking_in_persons.pdf  [5] https://www.kanlungan.org.uk/?page_id=2127
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