North Antrim DUP MLA, David McIlveen, who is chair of the All Party Group Against Human Trafficking in the Northern Ireland Assembly, took time out from Stormont this week to speak to local pupils on Anti Slavery Day.
Mr McIlveen said his party were taking the lead on the fight against human trafficking, with new legislation being introduced to the Assembly by his colleague Lord Morrow.
He said: “I would like to thank the Headmaster, Paul McHugh, his staff and the pupils for inviting me to speak to them today. The DUP is currently taking the lead on this issue, in an effort to make Northern Ireland a world leader in the fight against human trafficking.
“With recent reports suggesting that human trafficking has increased by 25% in the past year, it is absolutely vital that we take the opportunity to implement measures that will help combat trafficking in people.
“All of us have a duty to do what we can, to be vigilant and to work hard in the fight against trafficking. This can start with the very youngest of our communities and that is why I was so pleased to be able to speak to the students at Slemish today. I would also like to thank the two pupils that spoke today, Shakeel Mohammed and Joshua Park for their words and their efforts on Anti Slavery Day.”
Paul McHugh, Headmaster added: “Highlighting issues such as this is a vital part of the work we do as educators. It was a great experience for us all to listen to what work government is doing to combat this despicable crime.”