U.S. State Department Releases 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report
Monday, June 6, 2005 12:05 PM

The U.S. State Department recently released its fifth annual Trafficking in Persons Report, with particular emphasis on combating forced labor slavery and detailing the relationship between sex trafficking and the global spread of Aids/HIV. This year’s report also analyzes a greater number of countries in depth, examining each government’s concrete efforts to prevent human trafficking, prosecute traffickers and protect their victims.

This year, the report commended the Czech Republic in its International Best Practices section for creating a detailed screening process to assist police in identifying victims and pursuing trafficking cases. This information is also available for police to access on an intranet website. Slovenia received recognition for its Project against Trafficking and Sex and Gender Based Violence (PATS) which provides those asylum seekers most vulnerable, (single women and children), with information on the dangers of human trafficking and methods of self-protection. Preventative measures adopted by PATS include a one on one informational session with a social worker, and a small book detailing where a potential victim can receive assistance throughout Europe.

Both the Czech Republic and Lithuania were listed as Tier 1 countries for fully complying with the minimum standards set forth by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA).

Belarus, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Romania, Serbia-Montenegro, Slovenia, Switzerland and Tajikistan were listed as Tier 2 countries for making considerable efforts to bring themselves into compliance with the Act’s minimum standards.

The State Department listed Armenia, Russia, the Slovak Republic, Ukraine and Uzbekistan under the “Tier 2 Special Watch List”, which identifies countries whose governments do not “fully comply with the Act’s minimum standards but are making significant efforts to bring themselves into compliance with those standards.”  In addition, these countries are facing either a significant increase in the number of trafficking victims, failing to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat trafficking, or are countries committed themselves to taking steps towards compliance in the next year. In particular, Armenia was targeted for failing to implement elements of its January 2004 National Action Plan to combat human trafficking.

To view the report, click here.