EWL News

EWL welcomes strong gender perspective in common statement of EU agencies to address trafficking in human beings

[Brussels, 19 October 2011] To mark the 5th EU Anti-Trafficking Day on 18 October 2011, the EU Justice and Home Affairs Agencies (CEPOL, EASO, EIGE, FRONTEX, EUROJUST, EUROPOL, FRA), in cooperation with the Polish Presidency and the European Commission, organised a conference on the theme "EU Member States and Agencies jointly addressing trafficking in human beings and protecting victims" in Warsaw.

The EWL was invited to attend the conference, which aimed at exchanging views on strengthening co-operation between the EU agencies and other stakeholders in addressing trafficking in human beings. One of the key objectives of the event was to “ensure human rights-based and gender specific treatment of potential and actual victims of trafficking.” The EWL welcomes this objective which reflects a clear will to develop a gendered approach to trafficking.

At the conference, the Directors of the EU Justice and Home Affairs Agencies announced a joint commitment to address trafficking in human beings in a coordinated, coherent and comprehensive manner. Joint efforts will focus on better prevention of trafficking, more efficient investigation and prosecution of perpetrators, and a more effective protection of victims in compliance with fundamental rights standards. You can read the statement by clicking here.

The EWL is pleased to see a common commitment to work against trafficking in human beings from a gender perspective: “The fundamental rights of victims of human trafficking are central to EU policy in this field. Therefore, in addition to our specific mandate and activities, we are all committed to carrying out our work in full respect of human rights in line with the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and the European Convention on Human Rights. We will also ensure that a gender perspective is integrated in our structures, policies, and programmes and that particular attention should be paid to the protection of rights and adequate treatment of vulnerable groups of victims of human trafficking, in particular women, children and unaccompanied minors.”

The EU agencies also acknowledge the many manifestations of trafficking, and therefore commit to “ensure that the rights of victims are respected in practice, which includes due consideration of gender perspective and related factors that, in combination, can increase vulnerability.”

On the same day, EU Commissioner Cecilia Malmström and EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator Myria Vassiliadou issued a joint editorial on trafficking in the EU. You can read it here in Swedish.

The EWL continues to raise awareness on the gendered nature of trafficking and therefore on the need for any measure and policy addressing trafficking to develop a gendered approach.

EWL Policy Officer and Project Coordinator, Pierrette Pape, was invited to present the EWL’s approach on trafficking at the Portuguese conference on prostitution and trafficking for sexual exploitation, on 20 October 2011 (organised by PpDM). Click here to read a report of the event.

The EWL will next week host, together with UNRIC and UN Women, an event on trafficking and violence against women, where EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator Myria Vassiliadou is invited to present the EU approach, before the screening of the film ‘Not for sale’. Click here to get more information about the event.

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