EU anti-trafficking action plan to support refugees from Ukraine

EU commission

On May 11, the EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator (ATC) published a new EU Anti-Trafficking Plan to protect people fleeing the war in Ukraine. This action plan has been developed together with different EU agencies and EU Member States, as part of a 10 Point Action Plan.

The AT plan builds on the EU Strategy on Combatting Trafficking in Human Beings and sets forward five goals related to strengthen awareness,  prevention and enhancing law enforcement and judicial response, as well as improve early identification, support and protection of potential trafficking victims from Ukraine in EU countries but also in Ukraine and Moldova.

The EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator will implement the plan in cooperation with the National Rapporteurs and Equivalent Mechanisms of EU countries , EU Agencies and Civil society, in particular the EU Civil Society Platform against trafficking in human beings.

The Plan foresees in setting-up or improving the functioning of existing emergency anti-trafficking helplines or other emergency helplines to ensure that potential victims of trafficking can be referred to appropriate services. As many of our members currently already run anti-trafficking helplines, La Strada International calls upon the European Commission to invest sustainably and strengthen in particular existing anti-trafficking structures and hotline services in close cooperation with governments and civil society. The establishment of new helplines that will compete with existing helplines should be avoided.

According the plan, Civil Society will be involved in all relevant awareness raising measures. National authorities are further strongly encouraged to work with civil society organisations for the purpose of early identification of, assistance and support to victims.

The plan also aims to ensure programmes providing for the longerterm needs of victims, including by supporting them in their recovery and reintegration into the host Member States, in close cooperation with civil society organisations.