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Europe wide workshop seeks to improve responses to trafficking for labour exploitation

July 2, 2015

On 2nd-3rd July 2015 FLEX will meet with EU partners in Amsterdam for the first Pro-Act (pro-active identification and support for people trafficked for labour exploitation) European Workshop. Concluding the research phase of the Pro-Act Project, the workshop will bring together experts working in the field of anti-trafficking, including NGOs, Government and academics, to review research findings and refine pilot strategies for improving identification and support of trafficked persons across the EU.

The Pro-Act Project aims to develop effective strategies for pro-active identification and support for people trafficked for labour exploitation. Alongside partner organisations FairWork in the Netherlands and ADPARE in Romania, FLEX has conducted primary research to better understand the experiences of trafficked persons within existing identification and support systems in the three partner countries. Addressing the gaps in current provision as identified by this research, the Pro-Act Project will design improved strategies for detection, identification and support which can be tailored to different national contexts across the EU. This victim-centred approach seeks to empower trafficked persons to access their rights, with emphasis in the importance of continued consent and information sharing at every stage. This is to ensure that state officials, support providers and legal practitioners work coherently to offer empowering advice and support suited to the specific needs and priorities of persons trafficked for labour exploitation.

Today’s Pro-Act European Workshop will discuss research findings and gather expert views from participants in order to develop core strategies for the next phase of the project. The proposed strategies for identification and support for people trafficked for labour exploitation cover five key areas:

  • Access to information, improved detection and remedies;
  • Access to legal counselling and redress;
  • Empowering support tailored to the needs of trafficked persons;
  • Empowering psychological assistance; and
  • Access to benefits and appropriate employment.

The Workshop will encourage discussion and feedback based on the knowledge and experience of participants in order to refine and strengthen the suggested strategies. These strategies will then be piloted over a six month period in all three partner countries, during which time project partners will monitor progress and discuss outcomes with key stakeholders. A second workshop at the end of the pilot period will review and finalise the strategies for wider dissemination throughout the EU.

A summary of the Pro-Act research findings and resulting recommendations, along with proposed strategies for discussion at the European workshop can be found in FLEX’s Working Paper: Pilot Strategies for Pro-Active Identification and Support to Victims of Trafficking for Labour Exploitation.

The Pro-Act Project includes FLEX in the UK, FairWork in the Netherlands and ADPARE in Romania and is co-funded by the Prevention of and Fight against Crime Programme of the European Union.

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This blog reflects the views only of the author, and the European Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.