Beyond the short term: How to address vulnerability to trafficking in persons in the context of lasting crises?
During the 2022 Vienna Migration Conference, the Inter-Agency Coordination Group against Trafficking in Persons (ICAT) co-hosted the discussion “Beyond the short term: How to address vulnerability to trafficking in persons in the context of lasting crises?” organized by the International Center for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), ICAT co-chair for 2022.
This event discussed the vulnerabilities that fuel trafficking in persons for those who have fled conflict areas, particularly in the context of the conflict in Ukraine as well as measures that need to be taken to address the vulnerabilities to trafficking of displaced populations in the short and long term. Ms Revenco talked about Moldova’s response to Ukrainian refugees, their work to prevent trafficking in persons and their specific efforts to prevent trafficking in women and children, who made up to 90% of the person fleeing the country. She called for security and migration to be approached with the same quick, flexible, complex and adaptable cross-border response we already see in times of crisis and certain disasters.
Mr Chatzis, who represented ICAT during the panel mentioned the press release issued by ICAT in May on the risk of human trafficking in the context of conflict and how ICAT has been using its platform to support response in Ukraine as well as globally. In the long term, Mr Chatzis called for stronger cooperation among States and stakeholders and emphasized the need to replicate the timely response to the conflict in Ukraine in future crises. Particularly through early identification of victims of trafficking among refugee populations and flows and ensuring non-criminalization and non-punishment of victims, for example, if they violate administrative procedures.
Ms Celestine provided a survivor perspective to the conversation and highlighted the need for immigration and asylum reform embedding humanity and dignity as well as the need for survivor empowerment and giving them a voice to be heard. Specifically sighting the need for education and long-term mental healthcare to be provided for all those fleeing crises.
This event not only introduced the work carried out by ICAT on the question of vulnerability to trafficking in persons but also provided a space for policy and decision-makers to reflect on the impact of current policy measures to prevent trafficking in persons in the context of crises and protect its victims.
The complete discussion can be watched here: VMC2022 | How to address vulnerability to trafficking in persons in the context of lasting crises?
ICAT was established in 2007 by the UN General Assembly to enhance cooperation and coordination among UN agencies and other relevant international organizations to facilitate a holistic and comprehensive approach to trafficking in persons. Its members include 31 UN entities and other international organizations. In 2022, ICAT is co-chaired by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD).
ICAT has published extensively on trafficking in persons. Its wealth of information can be accessed on the website here.
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