Human trafficking: MEPs call on EU member states to protect victims better
EU member states should do more to protect victims of human trafficking, especially women, and take gender-specific prevention, assistance and support measures to help them, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Thursday. The text points out that EU legislation to protect victims of trafficking is not being properly enforced.
"Progress has been made in the fight against international trafficking gangs, but all too often victims are not being given the help they are entitled to under EU law, said rapporteur Catherine Bearder (ALDE, UK)."EU-wide measures to tackle this vile trade must be fully implemented by national governments, including the proper collection of statistics and identification of victims to give us a clearer view of the real picture", she added.
The resolution, approved by 391 votes to 43, with 53 abstentions, underlines that the European Commission has failed to keep to the timetable of assessment reporting required by the directive.
Women and children are especially vulnerable to trafficking
According to Europol, about 10,000 unaccompanied children have disappeared since arriving in the EU in 2015. Children should be registered upon their arrival and included in child protection systems, says the text.
To discourage the demand that drives trafficking for sexual exploitation, MEPs stress that the burden of proof in criminal cases should rest with those who purchase sexual services of trafficked persons, rather than with those who sell them.
Identify victims early and grant them rights
MEPs call on EU member states to ensure that police, the judiciary, medical staff and social workers all receive adequate training, so that they can identify vulnerable victims early and offer them the support they need. This includes accommodation, medical treatment, translation, legal counselling, including for the purpose of claiming compensation, and a recovery period of at least 30 days.
In order to ensure that support and assistance are provided, member states should grant victims residence permits and access to the labour market in the member state to which they were trafficked, says the text.
"To help to ensure that victims of trafficking receive adequate support and assistance to get their lives back on track, member states should grant victims residence permits and access to their labour markets. Furthermore, victims of trafficking are often required to give evidence in criminal cases against traffickers and therefore they need to be present, which is not always possible under the current rules", concluded Ms Bearder.
Latest News from
Questions and Answers: rescEU and Humanitarian Aid under the new MFF03/06/2020 11:33:00
The EU Civil Protection Mechanism is a crisis management structure that allows Member States and Participating States to strengthen their cooperation in the field of civil protection, to improve prevention, preparedness and response to disasters.
Questions and answers: the EU budget for external action in the next Multiannual Financial Framework03/06/2020 09:25:00
Together with the new European Recovery Instrument (‘Next Generation EU'), the European Commission is proposing a targeted amendment to its initial proposal for the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI) adopted in 2018.
Commission launches consultation to seek views on Digital Services Act package02/06/2020 15:25:00
Today the Commission has launched a public consultation on the Digital Services Act, a landmark package announced by President von der Leyen in her political guidelines and in the Commission's Communication “Shaping Europe's Digital Future” of 19 February.
Aviation Safety: Commission adopts new EU Air Safety List02/06/2020 14:33:00
The European Commission today updated the EU Air Safety List, the list of airlines that are subject to an operating ban or operational restrictions within the European Union as they do not meet international safety standards.
ESMA Publishes Final Report on Frandt Commercial Terms For Clearing Services02/06/2020 13:25:00
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU’s securities markets regulator has published its final report with technical advice to the European Commission (EC) on the fair, reasonable, non-discriminatory and transparent (FRANDT) commercial terms for the provision of clearing services.
Eurojust steps up the fight against migrant smuggling02/06/2020 11:33:00
To further strengthen the fight against migrant smuggling, Eurojust, the EU Agency for Criminal Justice Cooperation, has launched a new initiative: the Focus Group for Prosecutors on Migrant Smuggling.
US announcement on breaking ties with the World Health Organisation: Statement by the President of the Commission Ursula von der Leyen and High Representative/ Vice-President Josep Borrell02/06/2020 09:25:00
As the world continues to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, the main task for everyone is to save lives and contain and mitigate this pandemic.
Council adopts conclusions on the Afghanistan peace process and future EU support for peace and development in the country01/06/2020 16:33:00
The Council adopted conclusions reaffirming the EU's political commitment to support the people of Afghanistan on their path towards peace, security, stability, democracy, prosperity and self-reliance.
Coronavirus: practical advice for safe travel01/06/2020 15:25:00
After months of lockdown, travel and tourism could soon restart. Discover what the EU recommends to ensure safe journeys.