WHEREAS human trafficking, which involves the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of individuals for sexual or labour exploitation is modern day slavery; and

WHEREAS the offence of human trafficking is one of the three most lucrative enterprises carried out world-wide by organized crime, outranked only by the trade in weapons and drugs; and

WHEREAS according to the R.C.M.P. 600 individuals annually in Canada are victims of human traffickers for sexual purposes, 800 individuals are victims of human trafficking for drug trafficking purposes, forced marriage or domestic labour, and between 1,500 and 2000 individuals are transported across Canada for purposes of exploitation in other destinations, mostly within the United States; and

WHEREAS the domestic trafficking of Aboriginal and other women and youth from within Canada is of equal concern as the importation of individuals from abroad for purposes of human trafficking; and

WHEREAS Canada signed in 2000 the UN Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography which provides in Article 3(3) that “… each State Party shall make such offences punishable by appropriate penalties that take into accord their grave nature”; and

WHEREAS in October 2008 the Report of the Canada-U.S. Consultation in Preparation for the World Congress III Against Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents recommended that Canada enact a mandatory minimum penalty for human trafficking; and

WHEREAS in April 2009 the declaration of the Citizens’ Summit on Human Trafficking at the 2010 Olympics and Beyond included the recommendation that Canada’s Criminal Code reflect the fact that the crime of human trafficking should carry meaningful penalties; and

WHEREAS the Criminal Code S. 279.01, which prohibits human trafficking, provides no minimum sentences for the offence of human trafficking.

BE IT RESOLVED that S. 279.01 of the Criminal Code be amended to provide for a minimum penalty to achieve the law’s deterrent goals and highlight society’s abhorrence of the crime of human trafficking; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that services be provided to trafficked individuals particularly health care, legal care, temporary residential permits and sanctuary in Canada.