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The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has published its fifth global report on trafficking in persons. It covers 148 countries and provides an overview of patterns and flows of trafficking in persons at global, regional and national levels, based primarily on trafficking cases detected between 2016 and 2019.
The report unveiled some of several general tendencies in human trafficking around the world which need particular attention. First, victims are targeted when they are vulnerable, and the COVID-19 economic recession will result in more people at risk of trafficking. Second, traffickers exploit victims in a variety of forms and infiltrate the globalised legal economy. Third, traffickers adapt to technology shifts and exploit through the internet to operate in multiple locations at the same time. According to the report, forced labour is on the rise, and consequently, the proportion of adult male victims of trafficking is on the rise. Although there is a move towards universal criminalisation of trafficking in persons, criminal justice responses still differ from country to country.
The report underscores the essentiality of the partnerships between public and private actors and presents a series of policy considerations for both States and the private sector. The considerations for the States include establishing the specialised national anti-trafficking agencies with multidisciplinary expertise, strengthening the implementation of the Palermo Protocol, and enhancing the anti-trafficking policy based on solid research and data. Besides, the report reaffirms the crucial role of civil society and the private sector. Businesses and tech companies represent essential partners in addressing supply chain integrity to stop trafficking for forced labour and other forms of exploitation, and in countering recruitment and exploitation via the internet.
The full report is consultable at the link below.