The project 'Assistance in the Identification of Victims of Trafficking (VoTs)' is IOM Malta’s fourth consecutive project aimed at supporting the efforts of the Government of Malta to fight trafficking in persons in the Maltese context.
The project was implemented between 1 October 2016 and 31 December 2016 by IOM Malta, in partnership with the Ministry for Home Affairs and National Security (MHAS) of Malta. The objective of the project was to enhance the capacity of stakeholders in the counter-trafficking field, and, particularly, to strengthen the institutional capacities of the Maltese government to address the identification and protection challenges and to counteract the crime of trafficking in human beings more effectively, to increase knowledge on the scale and nature of human trafficking and to facilitate information-sharing and cooperation at the national level.
The following targeted activities were carried out within the framework of the project:
1. Modified, in-depth analysis of trafficking-in-persons case law
Within the framework of the previous counter-trafficking project, “Improve Quality of Prosecution and Protection of Victims of Trafficking through the Justice System in the Republic of Malta” – funded by the Embassy of the Republic of Ireland in Malta and implemented between January and June 2016, – IOM carried out research on the trafficking-in-persons case law and related crimes as dealt with by the Maltese court system. The research was subsequently reviewed and incorporated into updated training modules.
2. Implementation of tailor-made trainings
On the basis of the updated training modules, Maltese front-line officers, namely, representatives from the Immigration Police, Airport Police, Vice-Squad, and Rapid Intervention Unit (RIU); as well as the Office of the Refugee Commissioner (RefCom), the Agency for the Welfare of Asylum Seekers (AWAS) and Aġenzija Appoġġ, were provided with two separate one-day trainings by counter-trafficking experts. The overall objective of the trainings was to raise awareness of front-line officers on the impact and scale of the human rights abuses that are at the core of human trafficking crime and to continue to support national actors in the fight against human trafficking.
The successful completion of the project in December 2016 led to the achievement of the following main results:
1. Increased knowledge among the Immigration Police, Airport Police, Vice-Squad, RIU, RefCom, AWAS and Aġenzija Appoġġ on the scale and nature of trafficking in persons among asylum-seeker/beneficiaries of international protection.
2. Enhanced capacities of Maltese governmental and non-governmental stakeholders in identifying, protecting and assisting victims of trafficking.
3. Facilitated information sharing and cooperation amount relevant stakeholders at the national level.