Scope of rehabilitation policy in protecting victims of trafficking in human beings -Nazaket Balabeyova
Trafficking in human beings is a serious violation of human rights. Literally thousands of men, women and children have been trafficked to, through and from the region for sexual exploitation, labor, begging, delinquency and adoption. The majority of trafficked persons do not have access to effective protection mechanisms. A crucial prerequisite of the effective measures is the building and strengthening of the relevant local and national institutions.
A human rights based approach recognizes that human trafficking is not just a criminal activity but one that has profound human rights implications both for victims and for the governments and non-governmental organizations that must deal with them.
The human rights of trafficked persons shall be at the center of all efforts to prevent and combat trafficking and to protect, assist and provide redress to victims.
Access to support and protection services should be facilitated by state and non-governmental organizations. There should be an initial assumption that the victim is presumed trafficked person so they can be processed and referred to appropriate support and protection services.
A basic step towards recognizing the human dignity of trafficked persons and accepting that they are victims is to provide them access to accommodation, specialized medical care, counseling, maintenance, and permission to work and continue education or skill training.
Combating trafficking in human beings requires a multidisciplinary and cross sector approach, involving all relevant actors from government and civil society.
Measures to combat human trafficking require strategies that cut across numerous fields, including, internal security, economic and social policy, employment policy, migration, human rights, and crime prevention policy.
From the array of strategies six main approaches can be separated: trafficking as a moral problem, as a problem of crime, a migration problem, a public order problem, a labor problem and as a human rights problem.
State should offer victims shelter and assistance, but also respect their wish to regain control of their lives by offering them the opportunity to work and earn a living. State or non-state shelters and rehabilitation centers should be established in the regions of the country. It combats trafficking of human beings when they need to move away from their place for having assistance.
Access to safe housing is one of the central requirements of comprehensive support and protection services. The provision of safe housing and shelter should ideally be flexible, with a view to the needs of the individual victims. These institutions provide initial counseling; assessment of social, medical, and psychological needs; specialized services including shelter.
A confidential shelter should create safe haven for a trafficked person by assuring high security standards while respecting their right to privacy and autonomy. Also apartments can be rented as decentralized accommodation. It helps to provide protection to trafficked persons who may still be in danger from traffickers. The address remains secret for longer periods of time.
Trafficked persons need access to specialized services as crisis intervention, long term psychological counseling, legal consultation, vocational training, and support to access employment opportunities.
Straining and other programs should be put in place to facilitate and promote victims’ access to the labor market.
Specialized institutions can offer long term support in variety of areas. Since victims of trafficking have usually been recruited from desperate personal circumstances their return may once again leave them in an untenable situation. Long term rehabilitation and stabilization often requires the creation of new and more secure living conditions.
In cases where anti trafficking NGO’s either do not exists or week in their provision of victim support and protection services, efforts will need to be invested in facilitating the development of civic groups with the ability to assume this role in the national mechanism.
Efforts must be combined and concentrated to provide access to basic needs and safety for victims of trafficking.