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Shadow Foreign Secretary, Yvette Cooper is urging the government to sign up to the European Directive on tackling human trafficking.

The coalition government has said it will opt out of the Directive, which would improve cross border co-operation in tackling trafficking across Europe, increase support for child victims in the UK and ensure independent monitoring of government policies on human trafficking.

To mark the first ever anti slavery day (18th October 2010), Cooper is calling on the government to put its Euro - scepticism aside and take action to stop this modern day slavery.

Shadow Foreign Secretary and Minister for Women, Yvette Cooper said:

"It’s appalling that in the 21st century, slavery still exists. Many vulnerable people all around the world are still exploited and made to suffer at the hands of criminal gangs. That’s why the government must back Europe wide action against trafficking.

“By pandering to anti-European prejudices in some parts of the Conservative party, ministers are putting the safety of thousands of women and children at risk.

“If the government is serious about cracking down on human trafficking, it would be a fitting response to mark the first ever national anti-slavery day for them to drop opposition to the EU Directive now.”

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