PIA Press Release
Feature: ITUC 2010 Best Practices Manual for Trade Unions
Anti-human trafficking initiatives and practices
Manila (28 June) -- The new International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) publication released on June 16, 2010 details the extent of slavery and other forms of forced labour around the world, and sets out practical steps that trade unions can take to boost the global drive to help the more than 12 million people trapped in the different kinds of forced labour.
The ITUC represents 176 million workers organized in 312 national trade union centers in 155 countries.
The Best Practices Guide, "How to Combat Forced Labour and Trafficking", gives examples of some of the most prevalent and severe forms of forced labor and human trafficking practices and highlights some of the trade union activities already undertaken: on getting the legal framework in place, on ensuring the proper application of laws and regulations, on promoting prevention policies, and on developing national plans against forced labor.
The publication features some 21 trade union-led best practices ranging from improving laws against forced labor in UK and Kuwait, reintegration programs for trafficked people in Italy and Nepal, industry-based actions against forced labor in logging, cocoa, temporary agency work, domestic work and migrant farm workers in Peru, Italy and Malaysia to strategies to raise awareness and anti-trafficking prevention in the Philippines.
On ensuring victim?s protection and promoting prevention and reintegration policies, the publication highlights Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP) and its community-based multi-sectoral groups and linkages? experience in developing and implementing programs to fight both internal and cross-border trafficking and address factors that make individuals vulnerable to trafficking including:
- setting up of help desks in transport terminals which provide information and advice on how to avoid trafficking;
- showing anti-trafficking videos on buses, boats, transport terminals and offices;
- creating 24/7 SMS-emergency assistance for reporting trafficking;
- creating a website with advice, activities, publications, news articles, campaigns, etc. (www.trafficking.org.ph);
- running community education programs and prevention campaigns in schools;
- signed formal partnership agreements and Memorandum of Understanding with 35 overland and sea-based transport companies, TUCP affiliated transport unions and other support groups (port workers, bus/terminal vendors, transport associations, port authorities and local government units) for joint monitoring of potential in-transit trafficking activities and free transportation for victims and accompanying family members or custodians
- developing standard reporting and monitoring forms for trafficking cases and complaints, along with computerized monitoring systems and flowcharts for accessing services;
- providing counseling services, tracing family members and facilitating free transport so that migrants can return home;
- monitoring the activities of private recruitment agencies and reporting instances of labour exploitation or illegal activities to the authorities; and
- provision of free vocational courses and retraining opportunities for trafficking victims and their families on in-demand skills (e.g. welding, housekeeping, accounting, call centers, etc.) and facilitate their access to employment.
"As a major player in the trafficking campaign in the country, with major accomplishments, with a track record in trafficking activities, TUCP, our affiliates and partners will continue to contribute to the country's efforts against trafficking," TUCP General Secretary Ernesto Herrera said.
"Once the 15th Congress is constituted, the TUCP Party List will file measures that will further protect trafficking victims/survivors and their families and improve anti-trafficking laws including for domestic workers," Mr. Herrera added.
"The best practice manual, developed in partnership with the ILO's Bureau of Workers Activities (ACTRAV) and the Special Action Programme on Forced Labor (SAP-FL), aims to provide trade unionists and other interested individuals and organizations with a useful tool for increasing awareness of what forced labor is and how it can be effectively challenged," ITUC stressed.
To read the new ITUC Report on Forced Labour please visit: http://www.ituc-csi.org/ituc-guide-how-to-combat-forced.html. (TUCP/PIA-Surigao del Norte) [top]