Ending Human Trafficking
Since the first victim of trafficking for sexual exploitation approached us in 2006, the Immigrant Council has developed specific expertise on trafficking of migrant women for sexual exploitation. We abhor the highly gendered nature of this crime that involves devastating exploitation in the sex industry, where more than 90% of the prostituted are vulnerable migrant women. We fight to stem the tide of this fast-growing crime by focusing on assistance to migrant women, while also working for the reduction of the demand from consumers that drive sexual exploitation. We monitor international developments to ensure we support women and girls in the best and most effective way possible.
Our legal team prioritises victims of trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation when taking on legal cases, given their level of legal complexity and the additional vulnerabilities of those affected. We also seek to address the systemic criminal elements of this abhorrent trade in human beings. We do this by researching the patterns of criminality in migration-based trafficking and investigating best practice approaches for responding to and supporting victims of this crime.
Using this evidence base we advocate for changes in policing, legal support and care services offered to victims. We actively campaign to change the laws and practices that adversely affect victims of trafficking and which make Ireland an attractive destination country for traffickers.
Our particular concerns relate to how the Government identifies victims– currently not compliant with international standards, how victims are supported, how we can raise awareness of the impact of this crime so the minority of men who pay for sex will reconsider providing the profit that fuels traffickers’ violence and exploitation of women, children and men.
The Government has made a number of significant commitments in the Second National Action Plan to Prevent and Combat Human Trafficking in Ireland and provided a clear opportunity and mandate to act with commencement of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act 2017. We will continue to work to ensure the recommendations and legal obligations are implemented, while also seeking action on a variety of associated concerns. These include a need to address the variety problems experienced because victims of trafficking are housed in Direct Provision reception centres and emerging issues like exploitative sham marriages and reintegration challenges.
The number of trafficking convictions since 2013.
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