Cape Town - E-hailing service Uber has partnered with an anti-human trafficking organisation to provide tips and resources to counter the escalating scourge.
A21, a global anti-human trafficking organisation, and Uber will educate drivers to identify and report human trafficking.
According to A21, during April, when most communities were in lockdown, the SA National Human Trafficking Hotline saw a 47.8% increase in crisis trafficking situations reported compared to April 2019.
Additionally, in September, 30% of the calls to the hotline were related to vetting job opportunities, which was a 1000% increase.
Uber SA manager Nduduzo Nyanda said they developed resources and tips to learn how human trafficking works, how it may present, and how they can report or reach out for help, including a podcast, where drivers can learn more about the hotline and what to expect when they reach out.
“We want to reinforce our commitment to helping raise awareness of this heinous crime and be a part of the solution by using our technology and expansive network to help mobilise communities and connect people to further resources.
“By providing them with resources and education with the help of A21, we want to encourage them to be vigilant while on the road, and we hope to disrupt the human trafficking industry and take a step towards building safer communities for everyone,” he said.
A21 SA manager Katie Modrau said the shocking reality was that only about 1% of victims caught in slavery will ever be rescued.
“That’s why it is important that more people understand what human trafficking is and how to identify it, as there is more chance a victim has of being rescued.
“We are grateful for Uber’s commitment to helping drivers,” she said.
Nyanda said as the global Covid-19 pandemic continued, the resulting economic instability and social disruption had consequently caused many individuals to be more vulnerable to violence, abuse, and human trafficking
“That’s why truly understanding this issue, and how trafficking works in diverse communities, is now more important than ever,” he said.