ROME – Pope Francis’s right hand man on migration is calling for legal and secure channels to guarantee that tomorrow’s migratory movements aren’t marked by the “travesty” of human trafficking. He also urged nations to recognize the “forces of demand,” such as labor below minimum national standards that makes human trafficking “very profitable.”
Jesuit Father Michael Czerny said that the migration process often begins with “high hopes and expectations” for a better future, but that since “regular and affordable routes are generally not available, many migrants employ smugglers.”
Traffickers, he said, can “easily take advantage of the desperation of migrants and asylum seekers,” after which they end up in an irregular or undocumented status, which puts them at further risk of being exploited and enslaved.
Czerny – handpicked by Pope Francis to be Undersecretary of the Section for Migrants and Refugees at the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development – was speaking at a United Nations’ Fifth Thematic Session on the Global Compact for safe, orderly and regular migration on Monday.
The topic of the session is: “Smuggling of migrants, trafficking in persons and contemporary forms of slavery, including appropriate identification, protection and assistance to migrants and trafficking victims.”
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