2012/09/14 - Backes & Strauss the Victoria Blue Heart give them a voice


Backes & Strauss are delighted and proud to reveal the bespoke designed Victoria Blue heart, created an crafted in white gold with white diamonds and blue sapphires to directly benefit and highlight the work of the United Nations Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking, which we wholeheartedly support.

The Victoria Collection is inspired by Backes & Strauss 19th century jewellery designs from the company’s achive collection, the Victoria Era, given a fresh and novel twist by the design team and brought to life by supreme craftmen.

On the evening of Tuesday 17th January 2012 in the aptly named Salon des Nations at The Hotel des Bergues, Geneva, Backes & Strauss proudly revealed the Victoria Blue Heart watch.

Backes & Strauss CEO Vartkess Knadjian welcomed guests including selected representatives of the international media and the diplomatic corps; “we must all do what we can to further awareness of the work of this campaign in fighting such heinous crimes”, before showing the UNODC’s award winning video “Better Future”.

“We are incredibly proud to support the UN Voluntary Trust Fund in their fight to create a better tomorrow for the victims of human trafficking” says V; Knadjian, “in helping to raise awareness and funds for so many victims”.

Knadjian then introduced HE Mr Yury Fedotov, The Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, “Criminal proceeds from human trafficking amount to some $60,000 a minute. By comparison, the Voluntary Trust Fund is supported by an average of around 80 cents a minute, based on money received. The disparity is glaring”.








Technical Specifications


Human trafficking: the facts


Human trafficking is a crime that shames us all. It involves the act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harbouring or receiving a person through use of force, coercion, deception or other means, for the purpose of exploiting them. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers, in their own countries and abroad. Every country in the world is affected by trafficking, whether as a country of origin, transit or destination for victims. Backes & Strauss and the UNODC, as guardian of the United Nations Conventions against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC) and its Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons has human trafficking as one of their priority areas of work.

The facts

It is estimated that 2.4 million people throughout the world are lured into forced labour as a result of human trafficking at any given time. (ILO, 2005)

Women and girls account for about 80% of the detected victims. Child trafficking accounts for about 15-20% of the victims. Child trafficking has been detected in all regions of the world, and in some countries is the major form of trafficking detected. (UNODC, 2009)

Sexual exploitation accounts for about 80% of the detected cases. Experts believe trafficking in persons for forced labour is greatly under-detected or that it is mostly prosecuted under other offences. (UNODC, 2009)

In 30% of the countries where the gender of the offender was known, more women were convicted for human trafficking related offences than men. (UNODC, 2009)

The United Nations estimates the total market value of illicit human trafficking at US$32 billion. (ILO, 2005)

The data on detected cases show that intra-regional trafficking in persons (within a region) was predominant in most countries and that trans-regional (across regions), though still significant, was relatively less frequent. (UNODC, 2008)

Domestic trafficking was detected in at least 32 countries among those where information was available, and in some countries, it is a major issue. (UNODC, 2008)

The Blue Heart Campaign

The Victoria Blue Heart watch and the Blue Heart Campaign’s goals are to inspire people and mobilize support for action against human trafficking by international organizations, governments, civil society, the private sector and ultimately by individuals. The Blue Heart also aims to enable citizens to show their support to the cause and to increase understanding of, and create urgency around the issue of human trafficking in order to spur coordinated actions to fight the crime. The intention is that the Blue Heart becomes the symbol for human trafficking. Backes & Strauss is proud to share it. www.unodc.org/blueheart