Aim of this website

The manual and this website are aimed at experts from all organisations that could come across trafficking of human beings (THB) for labour exploitation. They are intended to help inspire and strengthen the policy and practice to address THB for labour exploitation.  More specifically, they aim to stimulate multidisciplinary and cross-border cooperation and a comprehensive approach against this phenomenon.

Because organisations encounter THB at different stages in the trafficking process, they can only build a complete picture of the issue when they combine their information. They can then undertake joint or complementary activities against THB for labour exploitation. Law enforcement agencies can investigate and prosecute the traffickers. Other organisations may be able to apply administrative sanctions or to revoke licenses.

Cooperation is also necessary to provide victims with tailor-made support and assistance. Next to government agencies, NGOs, trade unions and companies also have important roles regarding these issues, for example in preventing of THB for labour exploitation and protecting victims.

Most victims of THB in general identified within the European Union are EU citizens. (See also Statistics.) Cases of THB for labour exploitation regularly involve several member states. Therefore, cooperation at the EU level is essential. The website mainly focuses on strengthening cooperation among and within EU countries, but it also contains advice on cooperation with third countries.

Although this website concerns THB for labour exploitation, many of the suggestions could also be relevant to other forms of exploitation, including sexual exploitation. When organising regular meetings, creating units or setting up systems, it may make the most sense if these focus on all forms of exploitation, not just labour exploitation. However, the text only refers to THB for labour exploitation.

This website is not intended to prescribe how member states ‘should’ respond to trafficking, but rather to provide advice and inspiration. Individual responses may need to be tailored to the national, regional or local context, as well as the specifics of the crime problem in question. This could for example be necessary because the mandate of organisations is different in different member states.

Finally, this website is not a scientific document. It is not based on research, but on the knowledge and experience of experts from EU member states, collected during workshops and through questionnaires. This means that the advice on this website is not based on scientific facts, but on observations of experts working in the field and on the (still limited) information that different organisations possess.