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Newsletter #5

Welcome to the fifth DESIrE newsletter!

Welcome back to the DESIrE Newsletter! The DESIrE project partners have accomplished great work in the last months to advance knowledge on trafficking in human beings for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Find out in this newsletter what our team has been doing and what is waiting for you.

Warm regards,
The DESIrE Consortium


Understanding prevention on the context of human trafficking


As you know by now, so far, the DESIrE team has defined the core concepts of this research, which are demand, sexual exploitation and prevention. Our definitions of demand and sexual exploitation have been available on the website for a long time now, but you can now also discover our definition of prevention in the context of trafficking in human beings in an academic article published in the Bulletin of the Polish Society of Criminology.


Summary of workshop on preliminary findings of empirical research


After this first phase of definition, we have outlined the differences of the four national policy and regulatory models on selling sex in our four countries of study, and conducted a large-scale fieldwork in these countries regarding the understanding of various stakeholders on selling sex, trafficking in human beings, sexual exploitation and the laws and policies regulating sex work/selling sex. In this framework, before the summer of 2018, we held a workshop in Zagreb to present the preliminary findings of the empirical research. If you did not have the chance to attend the workshop, but would still like to know what came out of it, we prepared a summary of the workshop. For a more detailed analysis of the fieldwork, you will soon be able to read our forthcoming comparative report.


Briefing papers on alternatives to legislation to combat trafficking in human beings


But that is not all. We have further researched how other avenues than legislation can also be used to combat trafficking in human beings, and how these can actually be used in conjunction with the legislation and policies on selling sex to further enhance the chances of success go the fight against trafficking in human beings. You can read about them in our two briefing papers, respectively on the use of technology to combat trafficking in human beings, and on other, non-technological and non-legislative measures that can discourage and reduce demand that fosters sexual exploitation related to trafficking in human beings.


Video involving persons buying sex on combatting sexual exploitation


In the spirit of using technology to combat trafficking, we have also prepared a second video to be used on adult entertainment websites that seeks to involve buyers of sex services in the fight against trafficking in human beings for sexual exploitation.  Watch it here:


SAVE THE DATE - Final conference

On 13 December the DESIrE project will be having its final conference in Brussels where we will present our major project findings. The agenda will be available soon, visit our website to stay tuned!


Project news

On behalf of the DESIrE consortium, VUB attended the "International roundtable on human trafficking in the digital age" in Vienna, where experts discussed how technology is used both by traffickers to lure new victims, and by those fighting against trafficking. The advantages and shortcomings of the use of technology were also analyzed.


You are interested in direct field assistance to persons selling sex? Then have a look at the blogpost drafted by the Croatian DESIrE partner, FLIGHT. It outlines the importance of NGOs such as FLIGHT or HELP who work directly in the field for the health safety of persons selling sex, especially in countries where advertising the prostitution of another person as well as the provision of sexual services are criminalized.


Finally, do not miss our latest blogpost on "Empowering Public Authorities in the Technological Fight Against Traffickers" drafted by VUB and published on the Human trafficking center blog. The blogpost discusses one of the possibilities available for public authorities to potentially remedy their lack of expertise and human ressources in combating human trafficking.