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Major Incident in Essex

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:43 pm on 28th October 2019.

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Photo of Priti Patel Priti Patel The Secretary of State for the Home Department 3:43 pm, 28th October 2019

The hon. Gentleman is absolutely right. In people smuggling and the trafficking of individuals, we are witnessing the worst of the worst. We are seeing perpetrators exploiting vulnerable individuals and families, more often than not putting them into debt bondage. They lose their livelihoods and they are then exploited once their children or family members arrive in another country. There is more that we can do—there is no doubt about that—but that can be achieved only through bilateral co-operation and international standards and co-operation across the board, so that we have consistency. If we are going to stop this practice happening, we have to stop vulnerable families being exploited. From the British Government’s perspective, yes we will do more, but we will also lead calls internationally to try to root this out.