Princess Eugenie of the United Kingdom and United States anti-human trafficking Ambassador John Richmond recently spoke in favor of using new technology like phone apps and blockchain to address human trafficking, Reuters reports on April 8.
John Richmond, anti-human trafficking Ambassador and Princess Eugenie of the United Kingdom recently spoke about how blockchain and other emerging technologies could put an end to human trafficking.
Citing the Global Slavery Index by human rights group Walk Free Foundation, Reuters reports that there are 136,000 slave laborers in the U.K., which is 10 times higher than in 2013.
The experts had a meet in Vienna, Austria hosted by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE). They noted that the rise in internet usage has led to a parallel increase in traffickers exploiting potential targets.
Princess Eugenie -the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth reportedly noted that technology could also help fight trafficking. Eugenie, who founded the Anti-Slavery Collective in Britain in 2017, said:
“I have learned about how blockchain is having a huge impact on supply chain management, and how an app in Britain can help the public report modern slavery at car washes.”
Eugenie threw light on an initiative by Coca Cola and the U.S. Department of State, and the Safe Car Wash App. The latter began in March 2018 and aims to use blockchain technology to create a secure worker registry.
Anti-human trafficking Ambassador Richmond noted that technology itself cannot stop human trafficking, saying, “
“There is not an algorithm or app that is going to stop human trafficking. But there are tech tools that can help people to do their job better. This is the slow, grinding, day-in, day-out work that can help make a difference.”
The partnership aims to address the problem of forced labor by using blockchain’s validation and digital notary capabilities to create a secure registry for workers and their contracts.
The Safe Car Wash App found out that 1,000 cases of slave labor at car washes in the U.K. The app was launched by the Church of England and the Catholic Church in England and Wales last June. It allows users to enter their location and enter any indicator of the presence of slave labor, such as whether the establishment only accepts cash, or workers seem fearful.