A new combating of Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Act to better fight against TIP in Guyana has been drafted and will be put forward to legislators for consideration shortly.
Coordinator of the Counter-Trafficking in Persons (C-TIP) Unit within the Ministry of Social Protection, Ms Tanisha Williams-Corbin, said the previous Act was passed in 2005 and needed to be reviewed. She explained that the review was done through consultations and a new Act was subsequently drafted.
“The initiative falls under a TIP project funded by the United States Department of State and is implemented by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM). In collaboration with IOM and the Ministerial Task Force for TIP, consultations were held with stakeholders and the new Act was drafted by consultant Rosemary Benjamin-Noble,” Williams-Corbin explained.
It has been almost three years since the Unit began collaborating with the IOM and the two partners are currently working on Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for responding to TIP in Guyana. The Unit’s Coordinator said the SOPs will help with more effective ways of responding to investigations and prosecutions of TIP cases as well as protection and reintegration of TIP victims.
“The Ministry of Social Protection has received the final draft of the investigation and prosecution SOPs and we have since submitted our final comments to the consultant, Ms Diana Shaw. Once the document is returned to the Ministry, we will sign on to the SOPs along with our partners,” Williams- Corbin underlined.
Ms Shaw will also soon review the protection and reintegration SOP which deals with the provision of psychosocial support to victims of TIP, after which bilateral meetings and validation workshops will be held. The final document is expected by the end of this year.