Another day, another misguided do-gooder.
This time it’s Mary Honeyball MEP (stop sniggering at the back!). On her blog page “The Honeyball Buzz” she says:
The plans announced by the Metropolitan Police to abolish its specialist unit dealing with human traficking – trafficking of women and children – are nothing short of a disgrace.
So… Men don’t get trafficked then, no? (Cockle pickers anyone?) Or are we looking for the sympathy vote? Searching for a White Knight to save all these “poor defenceless” women and children? How patronising. This from someone who in the next breath would be almost certain to tell you that she wants equality for women.
Trafficking of women is to a large extent trafficking to sell women into prostitution. These often unsuspecting women are lured away from their homes, frequently on the pretext of a better life elsewhere, only to find themselves totally in thrall to ruthless criminals whose only aim is to exploit them for gain. It really is a modern form of slavery and should be treated as such. I hope there will be a major outcry against the Met’s plans so that they are forced to think again.
Now, I’m not going to tell you that no woman has ever been trafficked or coerced into prostitution, but methinks her numbers are screwy.
What is more, the Met trafficking unit has been viewed as an international example of good practice. It also takes several years to develop expertise into trafficking, expertise which would more than likely be lost if the Met were to disband its unit which has built up a range of knowledge since its inception in 2007. The nature of the crime also means that those cases which are brought to book are only the tip of the iceberg and if more of the iceberg is to be exposed, specialist expertise is required.
Blah blah blah…
Has this woman actually spoken to the Met about this? I very much doubt it. You see what happens is the same thing that happens when us tarts speak out: What we say doesn’t tally with what these people want to people, so they shout over us and we are ignored.
The facts are that these women just want to be remembered as heroes. They want to save someone. Unfortunately, they’re not particularly bothered about whether the aforementioned people actually want to be saved.
There is, in addition, the matter of the Olympics in London in 2012. The last football World Cup in Germany attracted thousnads of prostitutes who openly plied their wares as prostitution is legal in Germany. I was, in fact, one of a number of women who signed a petition to the German Government to outlaw prostitution at the World Cup. The general view was that a large number, more than likely the majority of those women had been trafficked from outside the host country. For the sake of the trafficked women, we need to be extremely vigilant to ensure that the same thing does not happen in London in 2012. It would be a massive tragedy if the Games were marred by any form of criminal element.
What about the prostitutes who are working independently and legally? No mention of those eh? Because again, we apparently don’t exist, because this woman chooses not to believe in us. Bloody good job my name isn’t Tinkerbell… Please clap your hands just to be on the safe side.
Anyway, as irritating and infuriating as all that is, its not a patch on this next quote from the comments on her blog, which I actually find rather insulting.
I’ll add the comment that she replied to, because it actually injects a modicum of sense into the madness:
Dr Belinda Brooks-Gordon, on October 7th, 2009 at 8:41 pm Said:
It seems strange to scrap the Trafficking Unit only 6 months after the government announced that it was to get a further £3.7m over 2 years. Maybe this is an acknowledgement of the falsity of the trafficking figures for sexual exploitation. No one denies that people are trafficked. The numbers quoted of those trafficked for sexual exploitation are spuriously high, while people brought to this country on visas issued by British Embassies to families for their staff are very high. Many of these staff are not allowed to hold their own passports nor do they speak the language here. See the Committee of Human Rights recent report on trafficking. These are ignored because people like Ms Honeyball find prostitution a bit ‘icky’ and tries to ban things which have been decided by other democratically elected governments.
There was mass hysteria before the World Cup about how dreadful it would all be, all the usual gothic horror stories were trotted out. What did we see? Happy families, and contented smiles. It is your own side Ms Honeyball who ramped up these figures. Even Alan Johnson admitted recently they have been badly worked out. And now they take the cowards way out with silent cuts.
maryhoneyballmep, on October 8th, 2009 at 10:07 am Said:
Dr Brooks-Gordon, Thank you for this comment. I take your point about the figyres. However, I do take issue with your comment that I find prostitution a bit ‘icky’. Prostitution is exploitation of women for fianacial gain. Few women either enter or stay as prostitutes willingly and most have a drug habit. I want every single woman to have the opportunity for a fulfilling life; prostitution most definitely does not provide this.
Most have a drug habit? Ok, I give in. I have two words for you Ms Furball: They start with F and end with off!
I feel better now.
Yours, still un-pimped, un-coerced and not a junkie (unless you count 2 Ibuprofen for the headache you’ve given me).
Quote of the Day:
Truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief or ignorance.
–W. Clement Stone