US State Department Says SVG Should Vigorously prosecute and convict traffickers

The US State Department in its 2016 “Trafficking in Persons Report” recommended that St Vincent should Vigorously prosecute and convict traffickers and impose sufficiently stringent sentences.

The 2016 report said the state needs increase training for officials on the definition of trafficking in persons under the 2011 anti-trafficking act and proper case investigation and management techniques.

It further stated that personal proactively identify suspected trafficking victims, particularly among vulnerable groups such as migrant workers, and refer them to appropriate care and services; promote a victim-centered approach to victim identification, protection, and prosecution by involving NGOs or other victim advocates.

The report further recommends that guidelines for identifying victims to government officials and NGOs be enhanced; develop and disseminate a more robust government-wide referral process for different types of suspected trafficking victims, and conduct victim identification interviews in safe locations.

The report now widely available to the public said victims often first appear as immigration or prostitution-related violators and are reluctant to disclose details of their exploitation in law enforcement settings.

In such case, the report recommended a need to raise awareness about forced labor and sex trafficking using a national campaign; and provide anti-trafficking training to immigration officials and diplomatic personnel.

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