Sun, Jul 03, 2016 - Page 3 News List

NIA strategy on trafficking proven effective: agency

Staff writer, with CNA

The US Department of State’s Trafficking in Persons Report placed Taiwan on Tier 1 in this year’s publication, which shows that the National Immigration Agency’s (NIA) strategy to curb human trafficking works, the agency said.

This is the seventh consecutive year that Taiwan has been placed on Tier 1 in the three-tier system. Tier 1 indicates the highest performance, it said.

However, although Tier 1 is the highest ranking, it does not mean that a country has no human trafficking. A Tier 1 ranking indicates that a government has acknowledged the existence of human trafficking and has made efforts to address the problem.

The report, released on Thursday, said the international community is concerned about Taiwan’s long-haul fishing expeditions that might exploit foreign fishermen, as well as forced labor for home caregivers, domestic workers and migrants working in the manufacturing sector, the agency said.

Each year, governments need to demonstrate appreciable progress in combating trafficking to maintain a Tier 1 ranking.

The agency said that Taiwan has practiced the “4-P strategies” — prevention, prosecution, protection and partnership — in conducting cross-border cooperation and cracking down on human trafficking.

Taiwanese authorities “fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking,” the report said.

The agency operates three shelters dedicated to victims of trafficking, and the Ministry of Labor subsidizes an additional 20 shelters and a 24-hour hotline that they can access, the report said.

Authorities also sustained efforts to prevent trafficking through numerous awareness campaigns, workshops and conferences, it said.

Taiwan’s Human Trafficking Prevention and Control Act (人口販運防制法) prohibits sex and labor trafficking, and prescribes penalties of up to seven years’ imprisonment. These penalties are sufficiently stringent, the report said.

The agency said it would continue to maintain relationships with civic groups and international organizations for cooperation and experience sharing, increasing protection for victims and rooting out human traffickers.

China was placed on the Tier 2 Watch List, meaning that the country deserves special scrutiny, while countries placed on Tier 3 fail to fully comply with the minimum US standards and are not making significant efforts to do so, the report said.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top