Identifying and assisting victims of trafficking
Identifying and assisting victims of trafficking: a joint action by the British and the Croatian Red Cross Societies
Photo Credit: Snjezana Bratanovic
Quantifying the scale of trafficking across Europe and having a better understanding of the barriers preventing the protection and assistance to potential victims of trafficking is a major challenge. Within the EU the number of victims of trafficking increased by 18% between 2008 and 2010. Over the three years, the vast majority of victims (i.e. 80 %) were female, with62% of all victims being trafficked for sexual exploitation, 25% for labour exploitation and 14% for other purposes such as removal of organs, criminal activities or, in the case of children, for sale.
In this context, a key challenge consists in avoiding the criminalisation of humanitarian assistance given to victims and in promoting cross-country cooperation to prioritise their humanitarian needs.
A project by the British and Croatian Red Cross Societies to identify and protect potential and actual victims of trafficking in human beings has been successfully selected out of 94 other projects for funding by the European Commission. The project proposal entitled PROTECT (Persons at risk of trafficking in Europe - capacity to identify and assist potential victims of human trafficking) was submitted within the framework of a targeted call on trafficking in human beings within the programme "Prevention of and fight against Crime 2007-2013”.
This project aims to respond directly to the needs of victims by establishing a good practice model with which 138 frontline practitioners/specialist caseworkers (border guards, law enforcement agents) can identify and provide assistance that is compliant with a victim centred approach. By using a training of trainers methodology, this project is expected to have significant replicability and multiplier effect beyond its scope, with the support of the European and Global Networks of the International Federation of the Red Cross.
|"Life in slavery"
Photo Credit:Ivona Pavlovic
- to develop and test a pilot e-learning module that is independently validated and transferable across the EU and within the Red Cross Movement and that can be used by frontline practitioners to identify victims of trafficking and to assist them to access their rights;
- to bring together multi-sectoral organisations to exchange learning, practice and skills;
- to improve coherence and coordination at EU level through transnational networks, protocols and referral mechanisms between Red Cross Societies, law enforcement agencies, government bodies and NGO networks in order to reduce the risk of duplication of effort;
- to systematically collate data in a way that can inform practice, understanding and future policy development within an EU framework which seeks to better protect, identify and assist victims.
As from September 15th, PROTECT project will promote a victim centred approach which recognises that victims of trafficking have equal rights and their access to justice; that they deserve respect, assistance, stability and recovery, and that there is recognition for and protection of their safety. The project also focuses on the potential prosecution of traffickers.The impact of the project and its learning will be promoted and disseminated through learning events, media (including social media), translation and e-learning modules, extensive transnational networking and through the creation of a core body of experts within the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement to influence and inform government policy and agenda.
- Mapping of PERCO anti-trafficking working group, July 2012
- More information about Croatian Red Cross anti-trafficking activities in link with the Red Bell campaign is available on the National Society’s website, the Facebook page of the campaign and the Youtube channel.
Young Refugees Development Officer