Speeches » The socio-economic situation of women in Europe
According to Eurostat, between 2010 and 2012, over 30,000 people were trafficked across Europe, 80% of them women.
The National Crime Agency reported that, over 3000 people were potential victims of trafficking in the UK, an increase of 21% on the previous year.
This modern-day form of slavery is on the rise and the EU is to blame.
Because we are forced to have open borders, the EU is enabling cross-border gangs to operate freely.
A UK government report said that free movement within the EU is extensively exploited by organised criminals to bring human trafficking victims to the UK.
Even Europol admitted that free movement policies make it harder to detect these crimes.
So what has all the EU gender initiatives, funding and quangos actually achieved?
The only people the EU has helped are the traffickers, and those with histories of abuse and violence to come to the UK because we are banned from doing criminal back ground checks.
If we left the EU, we will still be part of the International Labour Organisation that supports equal working conditions.
We will still be part of UN agencies that promote women's rights, and we'll be able to restore our links with the Commonwealth and do more to champion these causes.
There is no threat to women's working conditions or maternity leave - don't believe the scaremongers.
There is nothing to fear and everything to gain for women, if we leave the EU.