5 October 2006

UNODC unveils new toolkit aimed at combating human trafficking

VIENNA, 5 October 2006 (UN Information Service) -- The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) today launched a toolkit to help Governments, policy-makers, law enforcement agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) tackle human trafficking more effectively.  

It contains practical tools for police and other law enforcement officers such as a checklist to help identify trafficking victims as well guidance on interviewing victims and victim protection.

The toolkit also outlines key aspects of a comprehensive response to human trafficking, such as the need to bring national legislation into line with international standards and strengthen international cooperation in criminal justice, including the extradition of criminals, seizure of assets and confiscation of  the proceeds of crime.

UNODC Executive Director Antonio Maria Costa said robust international collaboration was essential in fighting trafficking. "Traffickers make a mockery of national borders. International cooperation is the basic condition for a successful response to human trafficking," he said.

Virtually every country is in the world is affected by human trafficking. "Although the evidence suggests that trafficking in people is increasing everywhere, few traffickers are behind bars," Mr. Costa said.  "This UNODC toolkit is an important way of helping national law enforcement agencies build their capacity to recognize victims, arrest their abusers and deal with both appropriately."

Kristiina Kangaspunta, Chief of UNODC's Anti-Human Trafficking Unit, said the toolkit contained a set of practical and easily applicable recommendations.

"As a compilation of global know-how, the toolkit allows professionals to draw on the best and most promising practices tested by countries, international organizations, the police, lawyers, healthcare and social workers," she said.

The toolkit addresses questions such as medical, psychological and legal protection, as well as shelter for victims.  It suggests ways to deal with the immigration status of victims and measures to facilitate voluntary repatriation and resettlement.  It also examines the issue of prevention of human trafficking.

UNODC is the custodian of the Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children (in force since 25 December 2003), and the Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Air and Sea.

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For further information contact:


Richard Murphy
UNODC Spokesman
Tel +43 1 26060 5761 Mobile +43 699 1459 5761
Email: richard.murphy@unodc.org