Time for companies to take responsibility in trafficking-issues

Can an innovation process in the business industry take several steps forward in order to take social responsibility in trafficking issues? The answer is yes. RealStars has got new project-funding, in order to go from word to action. 

RealStars is now starting the project A business industry free from trafficking, that will take place during 2019. The aim is to support the business industry in preventing prostitution and human trafficking, and thus contribute in preventing men’s violence against women. The project has support from the government, and will this year follow a project plan with actions involving massage institutions, hotels and other entities in the hospitality industry and big national and international companies. The companies in the different industries are involved in a collaborative process with competence-actions, tools, branding and communication in order to jointly take a stand and to fight for a business industry free from trafficking.

RealStars has previously carried out competence actions for the hospitality industry, but massage institutions will be a new field. What will follow now will be more ventures, with updated support-material for hotels and taxis for example.

Another route for the project is to conduct a study amongst the hundred biggest companies in Sweden to research awareness, knowledge and current actions, to prevent that the companies directly or indirectly support actors with connection to human trafficking. A first step is that companies with business traveling should have a policy against sex purchases in order to not be connected with the sex trade. Furthermore, companies in different lines of work are risking becoming connected to criminal activities through their business. RealStars and Faktum have reported how the credit card companies have connections to prostitution on the internet, where children and youngsters are subjected to severe violations of human rights. Services from Mastercard and Visa are used on so-called digital brothels. Banks also have a responsibility, which RealStars together with Parul Sharma recently gave attention to in the debate article Swedbank, Nordea, SEB m.fl. – hur ser ni på ert arbete i förhållande till människohandlare?

The new project A business industry free from trafficking is based on Realstars’ previous ventures and experiences with supporting businesses in acting in accordance with social responsibility and sustainable enterprising. Through these actions, the companies are also making sure that they are following the UNs global targets (Agenda 2030) where the importance of abolishing violence against women is clearly stated in target 5.2:

Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation

The focus on prostitution and exploitation should be on more agendas regarding both sustainability and equality, since the matter tends to disappear amongst other pressing subjects. The resources amongst anti-trafficking organizations are small today. We use #Reach5_2 to shed light on this and to show support for the Swedish model and the importance of minimizing the demand and to have a Sex Purchase Act.

The more that join, the bigger force and change we can achieve, and to join partnerships with is also pointed out in the UNs Sustainable Development target 17.

The project will be carried out in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö, together with hotels and partnerships in the hospitality industry.

” It has been surprisingly quiet about Sex-trafficking in the Swedish hospitality industry.”

A comment from one of the hotels that has joined Hotels Against Trafficking.