Project to combat human trafficking in Lanka | Sunday Observer

Project to combat human trafficking in Lanka

30 July, 2022

The International Organization for Migration (IOM), the UN migration entity, with funding support from the United States Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (J/TIP), will implement a three-year project to combat trafficking in persons in Sri Lanka.

It was launched in Colombo on Friday.

The project entitled ‘Strengthening Government and CSO Capacity to Combat Trafficking in Persons and Create Greater Impact’ (IMPACT) aims to strengthen national and local/community level capacities and scale up community driven responses to effectively combat and respond to trafficking in persons (TIP), and contribute to the effective implementation of the National Strategic Action Plan (NSAP 2021-2025) to monitor and combat human trafficking.

The IMPACT project will be implemented in close collaboration with the National Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force (NAHTTF) spearheaded by the Ministry of Defence.

Human Trafficking is an organised crime committed within the country and across borders. It is an offence affecting men, women and children and is a punishable offence under the Penal Code of Sri Lanka.

Trafficking can take different forms including, but not limited to, forced labour and sexual exploitation. Combatting the crime needs a coordinated response from Government and Non-Government stakeholders.

IOM Sri Lanka has extensive experience and a long history of work in countering human trafficking, including many years of collaboration with the NAHTTF. IOM will also partner with ‘Save the Children’ and four other civil society organisations to implement counter trafficking initiatives in 11 districts across the country under the project.

The US Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Julie Chung, said, “As we celebrate this new project, we are encouraged that it will support several key recommendations from the 2022 TIP report regarding proactive victim identification, improving victim services, improving efforts to address child sex tourism, promoting safe and legal migration, and supporting the continuing institutionalisation of sustained Government coordination.