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Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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UK People Trafficking Assessment Published

The UK Human Trafficking Centre (UKHTC) has published its first public intelligence assessment of people trafficking in the UK, A Baseline Assessment on the Nature and Scale of Human Trafficking in 2011. This is the first time that government authorities have attempted to describe the nature and scale of people trafficking in the UK.  Part of the Serious Organised Crime Agency, the UKHTC is the central point for anti-trafficking expertise and coordination within the UK.  It administers the UK's National Referral Mechanism (NRM) which is both the framework for identifying victims of human trafficking and the main mechanism for data collection (the data is regularly published on its website). ... Read more...

Time for a change? Access to support and visas for trafficking victims

The Crimes Legislation Amendment (Slavery, Slavery-like Conditions and People Trafficking) Bill 2012 (Trafficking Bill) will update Australia’s offence regime to criminalise a broader range of exploitative conduct, including by introducing new offences of forced labour, forced marriage and harbouring a victim.  While these are welcome changes, there is a strong call from stakeholders to improve other aspects of Australia’s anti-people trafficking framework, including the support available to victims and their access to visas. Articles 6 and 7 of the United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women (Trafficking Prot... Read more...

Trafficking in Persons Report 2012

On 19 June, the US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, released the 2012 Trafficking in Persons Report. The TIP Report is produced annually by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons within the State Department, and is seen by the US Government as its ‘principal diplomatic tool to engage foreign governments on human trafficking’. Released on Juneteenth or Freedom Day, the 2012  Report has particular resonance for the US as 22 September 2012 is the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, Proclamation 93, Declaring the Objectives of the War Including Emancipation of Slaves in Rebellious States.As explained in a FlagPost on last year's Report, each ... Read more...

Trafficking in Persons - Special Rapporteur's Report to the Human Rights Council

On 22 June, Joy Ngozi Ezeilo, the Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons especially women and children, presented her annual  report to the United Nations Human Rights Council, including reports of her missions to Thailand and Australia.Special Rapporteurs are independent experts appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council (formerly the Commission on Human Rights) to investigate, monitor, and advise on human rights violations – world wide or in specific countries. In carrying out her mandate, the Special Rapporteur undertakes country visits to study the situation on the ground and, develop recommendations to better prevent or combat trafficking and protect the human ri... Read more...

People trafficking, forced marriage and slavery offences

The Crimes Legislation Amendments (Slavery, Slavery-like Conditions and People Trafficking) Bill 2012 was introduced into the House of Representatives on 30 May 2012. This Flagpost is a skeleton of a larger project. If passed in its current form, this Bill will:expand the definition of slavery to include physical and psychological threats, coercion and deception expand the servitude and exploitation offences to not be limited to sexual servitude create new offences for aggravated slavery-like offences. create new offences for forced marriagecreate new offences for harbouring or receiving a trafficking or slavery victimincrease the penalties for debt bondage offences The Bill is the culminati... Read more...

New Zealand: Foreign Charter Vessels to be reflagged

On 22 May 2012, the New Zealand Government announced that it would require reflagging of foreign owned fishing vessels working in New Zealand waters, to "address labour, safety and fisheries practice concerns."Commercial fishing in New Zealand is managed by a quota system, with all fishing quota owned by New Zealand companies. Foreign Charter Vessels (FCVs) are foreign owned and flagged fishing vessels leased by a New Zealand company to fish in New Zealand's Exclusive Economic Zone. As discussed in a Flagpost last year, the then Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture, the Hon Phil Heatley MP, and the Minister for Labour, the Hon Kate Wilkinson MP, had jointly convened a ministerial inquiry i... Read more...

Trafficking in Persons: a round up of recent Australian events.

As we prepare to mark the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery on 2 December, it is timely to reflect on what has been a busy two weeks for all of those involved in Australia’s anti-trafficking efforts.As reported an earlier FlagPost, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Trafficking in Persons, especially women and children, has been in Australia for a two week fact finding mission (17–30 November), which included meetings with Government and non-government agencies, public lectures in Sydney and Melbourne (see also here), and a Parliamentary Library Lecture in Canberra. On 23 November, the Minister for Home Affairs and Justice, with the Ministers for Immigration and Citizenshi... Read more...

Trafficking in Persons Report 2011

 On 27 June, the US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, released the 11th Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report assessing the effort and achievements of 184 governments around the world in combating trafficking in persons.Each year since 2001, the US Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons has produced a report outlining major trends and issues in combating trafficking and providing country by country analyses and ratings. The TIP reports have evolved over time, and have increased in breadth of coverage and depth of analysis. The US Government regards this report as its "principal diplomatic tool to engage foreign governments on human trafficking".Each TIP Report assesses countrie... Read more...

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