Back on track: a new US funded project will strengthen Moldova’s capacitates to tackle trafficking in persons after a set back
To get the country back on track after being downgraded last year in the US Department of State Trafficking in Persons Report, the Moldovan authorities together with IOM Moldova launched today (29 May) an innovative counter-trafficking project called “Enhancing the Government’s Counter Trafficking Response and Improving the protection of Victims of Trafficking and Witnesses in the Republic of Moldova”.
“We hope that thanks to the efforts made in the last period of time by the Government, as well as thanks to this project, the Republic of Moldova will advance in the US State Department report on human trafficking,” said Mr.Tudor Ulianovschi, Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova.
“The Republic of Moldova has previously demonstrated leadership in projects funded by the US. We anticipate that the Republic of Moldova will continue to be a leader for other countries in the region in combating this important issue“, said Ms. Julie Stufft, Chargé d'affaires, US Embassy in Moldova.
The project will fill the identified gaps in the Moldovan counter trafficking efforts. This way, IOM Moldova will facilitate a series of trainings abroad for the representatives Witness Protection Division within the Moldovan Ministry of Interior. The WPD will also be properly technically equipped as suggested the US Report.
The skills of other stakeholders will be also enhanced. The capacities of the Border Police Officers will be improved as a new VoT rights-based approach online training course will be developed and made mandatory for officials stationed at border crossing points. A series of offline trainings will be delivered to judges, prosecutors and public layers as well. Over 850 Law Enforcement representatives and 360 civil servants will receive training through this project.
The project will also work to convince the private sector to collaborate with the Moldovan authorities, as internal labour exploitation is now widespread – an element missing at this point in the anti-trafficking policies in Moldova. In 2017, 87% of the identified and assisted VoT were exploited within the country.
Additionally, the Permanent Secretariat of the National Committee for Combating Trafficking in Persons will improve its coordination efforts with partners and especially those on the local level. Given the ever-changing landscape of the phenomenon, local commissions need to constantly advance their knowledge on TiP issues.
"The apparent attractiveness job offers sometimes masks in fact traps and results in trafficking of human beings. This phenomenon has a transnational character; it involves victims of all ages and of all genders”, mentioned Mr. Eduard Harunjen, General Prosecutor of the Republic of Moldova.
“It is important to break the trafficking chains and to restore the dignity of the victims and eradicate the negative attitudes that make for secondary victimization”, said Mr. Antonio Polosa, IOM Chief of Mission.
Lastly, IOM Moldova and Informational Centre “La Strada” will conduct together an nationwide awareness raising campaign on the risks of trafficking and will promote the existing anti-trafficking Hot Line (+373 0 800 77777).
“The effects of traffic are very hard to repair. After these crimes, we end up with traumatized people. That is why we will focus in the next two years of the project on Moldova's ability to protect victims and citizens from this scourge”, added Mr. Alexandru Jizdan, Minister of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Moldova.
For more pictures from the event, click here.
For more information, please contact Ms. Iulia Tvigun, IOM Moldova. Tel: +3736 9123 905; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.