A senior adviser on human trafficking in Norway’s Ministry of Justice recently visited Hope for Justice’s Hub in Oslo.
Jan Austad, Norwegian National Coordinator on Trafficking in Human Beings for the Ministry of Justice and Public Security, told our team: “Ukrainian refugees are in danger of being exploited. They need information and advice. It is very good that Hope for Justice are in Grønland Church, since there are so many Ukrainians who stop by there now. You do an important outreach job.”
The Government official accompanied members of our team to Greenland Church (Grønland Kirke), in the borough of Gamle, Oslo, where volunteers hand out vouchers for the nearby Fattighuset foodbank. Our team attends the church weekly to run a stand, speak with people and share information about modern slavery to raise awareness.
Ida Ryen, Hope for Justice’s Team Leader for our Norway Programmes, said: “We invite people to ask any questions they have about workers’ rights in Norway, and we are on hand to give advice. Prior to the war in Ukraine, we used to receive between 150 and 170 people at the church to receive foodbank vouchers. Now, there are many Ukrainian refugees travelling to Norway and we typically receive between 700 and 800 people who are in need of food.
“We were very honoured to receive Jan Austad from the Ministry of Justice and Public Security to see our work first-hand. He was able to witness the volume of people who require assistance, and how many people we are reaching regularly with vital anti-trafficking information. This is imperative for safeguarding those who have been displaced by the war, as well as those who are vulnerable in other ways.”
Since the start of the conflict in Ukraine, the number of people arriving at the foodbank for handouts has risen to between 600 and 800 each Wednesday and Friday.
We have a number of resources to protect people who are fleeing the conflict in Ukraine from human trafficking. These are available here.
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