Drafters should ensure that the administrative and regulatory aspects of the sex trafficking law are addressed through provisions addressing training, public awareness, task forces, data collection, the duties of law enforcement, prosecutors, judges, service providers and advocates; and the appropriation of funds to implement such provisions.
National action plans are one component of a comprehensive national anti-trafficking program which should include: (1) a national action plan; (2) a national rapporteur; and (3) a national referral mechanism. A national referral mechanism is a coordinated strategic partnership between government and non-governmental organizations that links trafficking victims with services and ensures that their rights are protected. (See: Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings in the OSCE Area: Co-ordination and Reporting Mechanisms, 2008; National Referral Mechanisms: Joining Efforts to Protect the Rights of Trafficked Persons, A Practical Handbook, 2004. Additional detailed Guidelines for the Development and Implementation of a Comprehensive National Anti-Trafficking Response are available from the International Centre for Migration Policy Development)
Many countries have created national action plans to outline the intended approach to anti-trafficking activities. These plans typically address prevention of human trafficking, protection of trafficking victims and prosecution of human traffickers. National action plans may be viewed as an expression of a country’s commitment to undertake obligations under international, regional and national law. The action plan may set out goals, objectives and deadlines for activities related to prevention, protection and prosecution. (See: China National Plan of Action on Combating Trafficking in Women and Children (2008-2012), 2009; Republic of Moldova National Plan to Prevent and Combat Trafficking in Human Beings, 2005; United Kingdom Action Plan on Tackling Human Trafficking, 2007)
A United Nations treaty body or a regional human rights treaty body may review a country’s progress in taking appropriate measures to address human trafficking against its own national action plan. The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women reviews a country’s compliance with international human rights obligations related to human trafficking and makes recommendations. When the Committee reviewed the sixth periodic report of Brazil in 2007, it noted that Brazil did not yet have a national action plan on trafficking in persons and recommended that one be elaborated. (See: Concluding Comments of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: Brazil, 2007) The Committee commended the Republic of Moldova for adopting a national action plan, but expressed concern that the national plan be adequately funded and its implementation not rely too heavily on non-governmental organizations. (See: Concluding Comments of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women: Republic of Moldova, 2006)
The Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children will also document whether a country has a national action plan when conducting a country visit and report assessing compliance with international human rights standards related to human trafficking. (See: Report of the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children: Mission to Bahrain, Oman and Qatar, paragraph 31, 2007)
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