Piero Picatto - Argentina

Good afternoon everyone, my name is Piero. I am a member of the NGO Vínculos en Red, which has been fighting for several years against human trafficking. I come from a family in which we are four brothers and the fight against trafficking has become for us a lifestyle. I believe that the problem we have at the global level is the naturalization of slavery. The invisibility of it is the reason why millions of people are being exploited worldwide.

We have to achieve a socio-cultural change and break apart from the paradigms in which we are raising our children and in which paying for sex is okay, and where women are worthless. It is shameful, as my friend, Alejandra, said, that today, in the twenty-first century, there are more slaves than when slavery was legal. And I also believe in doing a lot of prevention with young people, and changing the way we look at it, because it was not so long ago that it was very common – in my country – for grandparents to take their own children to buy sex. For me, the solution to this problem, which has been achieved in Argentina and in Buenos Aires (with Gustavo Vera), is to create specific laws that criminalize the crime of trafficking in persons, which provide long-term assistance programs to victims. Although the Argentine State takes care of the victims, it does not have a long-term program, which it should have, because the trafficking of people causes psychological problems, diseases, which can be venereal diseases or addictions. In short, we need to establish in the institutional curriculum – something we have achieved in Córdoba – specific projects devoted to human trafficking, the creation of specific shelters for the victims, and also, to achieve the criminalization of the clients, which is what we are looking to do throughout Argentina.

Thank you.

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