Adur, West & East Worthing Party including East Arun

Football must join fight against trafficking

A Liberal Democrat MEP has called on UEFA to help clampdown on the potential for human trafficking at its big tournaments.

In a debate in the European Parliament on sport in Europe, the long-standing campaigner against sexual exploitation of children, women and men criticised UEFA, European Footballs governing body, saying:

“While UEFA should be commended for launching campaigns to tackle racism in the game, I believe it is not doing enough to raise awareness of human trafficking.”

Pointing out that many “mega brothels” opened in host cities at the 2006 Football World Cup in Germany, Bearder disputed UEFA’s claim that large football events are “irrelevant” when it comes to trafficking.

Ahead of this year’s European Championships in Poland and the Ukraine, strip clubs are already opening near the football stadiums in Kiev. Bearder continued:

“Where there is a spike in demand for sex workers, there will also be a spike in the number of women trafficked. This summer is a massive year for sport in Europe and millions of people will enjoy the games. We must ensure that such great events are not tarnished by trafficking.”