Aberdeen City Council tackles child trafficking

Aberdeen City Council has today (Friday 29 September) announced a month of awareness-raising aimed at tackling the issue of child trafficking.

The activities coincide with the Scottish Government’s recent launch of its Human Trafficking and Exploitation Strategy.

The awareness-raising month will include stalls in the city centre with information leaflets and a social media campaign throughout October, run by Aberdeen City Child Protection Committee (CPC), the Green Light Project and Barnados. Other activities will include a live Facebook event with Police Scotland on 11 October, radio and press articles and daily bulletins in schools.

The campaign will also see a conference on 24 January next year hosted jointly by the Aberdeen CPC and it’s counterparts in Aberdeenshire and Moray for professionals involved in the safety and wellbeing of children.

Councillor Lesley Dunbar, Children’s Rights Champion for Aberdeen City Council, said: "Our city has a long record in ensuring the health, safety and wellbeing of our children and young people. Currently we are working with Unicef to become Scotland’s first Child Friendly Society by 2020.

“So it is only right that we are taking the lead, with our partners, in tackling this important issue. We’ll do everything in our power to ensure our children are nurtured in a supportive environment, free from harm.”

Gayle Gorman, Director of Education and Children’s Services, said: “The awareness-raising month is an important step in ensuring everyone plays their part in tackling the crime of child trafficking.

“Aberdeen City Council has zero tolerance of child trafficking and the sexual exploitation of children and, working with our partners, we want to ensure that people feel empowered to come forward and help us stamp out this abhorrent crime.”

The campaign’s key messages include:

  • Don’t turn a blind eye, speak up and help stop child sexual exploitation
  • .
  • Keeping children safe is everyone’s business
  • Child Sexual Exploitation is a criminal offence
  • Child Trafficking is a criminal offence
  • If you have a concern regarding a child report it. Call the Police on 101or the Child Protection Team 01224 306877
  • Be careful who you trust- do you know who you are speaking to on-line- are they who they say they are?
  • Trust yourself to know when something is wrong. If someone makes you feel unsafe, pressured, or frightened, follow your instincts and seek help.