Our eyes are open yet we do not see.

trafficking 2

I recently took part in a Community and Police Engagement Group meeting in the Kensington/Chelsea borough on behalf of a charity I volunteer for called Stop the Traffik. I was there to raise awareness about human trafficking and promote the Stop The Traffik community roadshow taking place June 22nd.

Two senior Metropolitan Police officers for the borough were in attendance and according to their figures, estimated around 200 brothels exist in the Kensington area.

I don’t live in Kensington but I visit friends in the area pretty regularly. I was surprised, perhaps naively by the stated figures. It got me thinking. How much goes on in our local community which we don’t know about?

As a young professional I live in the borough of Tower Hamlets and I work in Shoreditch. But do I really “live” in Tower Hamlets? Am i part of the community? In honesty it’s hard to say yes. I don’t know who my neighbours are and aside from a friend who I know from back home I rarely if ever talk to the people in my borough. I don’t really pay a huge amount of attention to whats going in the borough.

I’m part of the young professionals club. We move down to London for jobs and we develop a network of friends but mostly its with other young professionals. How many of us can boost friendships in the areas we live with people outside of that circle? Not many.

The meeting was a good opportunity to raise awareness and learn about the human trafficking taking place in our local communities. Without knowledge there can be no action. In the hustle and bustle of work and play in London its easy to become one of the walking blind.

By that I mean acceptance of the routine. A focus on getting where we want to go with minimal awareness of the wider picture around us. To walk around with our eyes open but actually see very little at all.