In January-June 2018, there were already 106 victims of human trafficking receiving services from Victim Support Finland. They represent 24 different nationalities. Last year the number of these clients for the whole year was 94. In 2015, the number was 15. The majority of the clients are men (66 men, 40 women). Most of the cases relate to labor trafficking (53) and a minority to sexual exploitation (21). A growing number of the victims have come to the country as asylum seekers and now live as undocumented migrants. They are especially vulnerable for labor exploitation because they have little knowledge of Finnish labor legislation and rights. Thus, the employers use this as a way of exploiting the employees.
Link to the press release (in Finnish).
New video on human trafficking released by Victim Support Finland
Victim Support Finland released a new video on human trafficking with the theme “a victim of human trafficking can be any one of us”. The video was directed by the award-winning Finnish film director Ezra Gould, who prepared the script and directed the video as pro bono work. The video was released in 3 languages: Finnish, Swedish and English.
To see the English video: https://www.riku.fi/en/various+crimes/human+trafficking/
To see the Swedish video: https://www.riku.fi/se/olika+brott/manniskohandel/
To see the Finnish video: https://www.riku.fi/fi/erilaisia+rikoksia/ihmiskauppa/
New cooperation model for preventing love scams
Victim Support Finland has been part of a project developing a cooperation model to prevent online love scams. Many victims, mostly women, have lost thousands of euros, sometimes even hundreds of thousands in these romance scams. Most of them are contacted through Facebook or dating sites and gradually become victims of scammers who ask them for money for various purposes.
The prevention in this model starts with the bank, which detects an unusual bank transfer. In order to prevent people from sending money to scammers they contact their customer in order to make sure that the money is not being sent to criminals. When contacting the customer they also tell about the services of Victim Support Finland and their webpage on love scams where the possible victim can make a test in order to test if she/he is being cheated. The third party in the model is the police who can give information and help the possible victim to start criminal proceedings. Victim Support Finland has also been training bank personnel on love scams and has prepared instructions on how to contact a possible victim who is reluctant to believe that she/he is a victim.