1. GENERAL INFORMATION
Denmark’s domestic policies against trafficking in human beings have traditionally focused on the sexual exploitation of women, as demonstrated by the Government’s Action Plan to combat Trafficking in Women 2002-2006.
An appendix added in 2005 widened the scope of the Action Plan to encompass trafficking in children. In the subsequent 2007-2010 Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human beings the scope was widened further to encompass any victim of trafficking in human beings.
In 2002, an inter-ministerial working group was created with a view to monitoring the implementation of the National Action Plan to combat Trafficking in Women. A national anti-trafficking centre (Danish Centre against Human Trafficking) – created in 2007, under the Department of Gender Equality – coordinates social services for victims of human trafficking.
Denmark is primarily a transit and destination country for women and girls trafficked from Eastern Europe but also from Asia and West Africa. Trafficking in women for prostitution is the most common form. Examples of trafficking in children for prostitution have also been noted, but these cases are very rare.
In 2011, 60 persons were officially granted the status as Victims of Trafficking in Denmark . As in previous years, by far the largest group was women trafficked into prostitution/sexual exploitation. Out of the 60 persons, three were trafficked for forced labour and three were minors.
The dominant country of origin for Victims of Trafficking identified in Denmark is Nigeria, but nationals from a broader variety of African countries have been reported by outreach workers. A new trend among Africans seems to be both men and women in business in their home country trafficked on false promises of starting up a business in Denmark but ending up in prostitution or forced labour with huge debts and stripped of land and business at home. Another trend also seen among African men is the traffic of renting a false identity from a person with legal residence in for instance Germany and so obtaining the right to work “legally” in Denmark. The cost of renting a passport can be very high and opportunities to quit the arrangement rather limited.
Thais constitute the largest group of foreign prostitutes in Denmark and among them the second largest group of Victims of Trafficking is identified.
Since the expansion of the EU in 2004, Demark has seen an increase in nationals from Eastern European countries working or looking for work in Denmark. The Danish Centre against Human Trafficking has identified living and working conditions for foreign workers in for instance the green sector that borders on forced labour and trafficking. Intensified corporation with the Danish Working Environment Authority, the Tax Authorities, the Immigration Service, the police and trade unions will highlight this area in the immediate future.
In street prostitution in Copenhagen, the largest Eastern European group is the Romanians. Several of these have been identified as Victims of Trafficking. Romanians mainly from the Roma minority are also involved in begging and in petty crime, but so far none has been identified Victims of Trafficking.
In the last years, there has been an increase in numbers of transsexuals in prostitution. A few of these has been identified as Victims of Trafficking.
Denmark is still working against THB after the government's "Action plan to combat human trafficking 2011-2014".
For several years Danish authorities have primarily fought trafficking for sexual exploitation but focus is now also aimed against THB for the purpose of forced labour. The Danish National Police is in cooperation with The Danish Centre Against Human Trafficking working together with the Tax authorities, the Danish Working Environment Authority, the Danish Agency for Labour Retention and International Recruitment and the Danish Im-migration Service in a interdisciplinary working group to create awareness about THB for the public but also for the employees in the authorities. A MOU has been signed and training of all relevant personnel has been initiated.
The Danish Centre against Human Trafficking (CMM) has furthermore initiated close corpo-ration with all relevant trade unions and a kick off seminar will be launched at the end of this month. Additional arrangements for accommodation of male VoTs has been made with local NGO in order to facilitate the need for safehouses for men identified as victims of trafficking for forced labour. According to CMM 18 per-sons have been identified as victims of trafficking for forced labour from 2007 to end of August 2012.
A summary of this text is available in the official language of the country.
2. INSTITUTIONAL AND LEGAL FRAMEWORK
Denmark prohibits trafficking for sexual exploitation and forced labour through Section 262A of the Danish Criminal Code. The specific offence of trafficking in human beings was established in Denmark in 2002.
The sentence for human trafficking has a maximum penalty of eight years' imprisonment but this can be extended under very aggravating circumstances. There is no minimum penalty. The penalty is commensurate with those prescribed for other grave crimes, such as rape.
Furthermore, the Danish Aliens Act contains special rules for illegal immigrants who have been subjected to trafficking in human beings.
- Victims of human trafficking who do not have permission to stay in Denmark are given a 30 day reflection period before leaving the country unless this is, for exceptional reasons, considered inappropriate.
- The reflection period can – under special circumstances or if the trafficked foreigners cooperate with the Danish authorities in planning their return to their countries of origin –be prolonged for up to a total of 100 days on request.
- During the reflection period, extended offers of safe shelter, legal and psychological assistance, health and social-pedagogical support are provided.
- Foreigners who have been exposed to trafficking are offered a prepared repatriation.
- Foreign victims, who are staying illegally in Denmark, are subject to special rules concerning expulsion. These victims are not punished by expulsion if the circumstances, without doubt, are related to the fact that the said person has been exposed to trafficking. An illegal stay in Denmark in general results in expulsion and entry prohibition for a specific period of time.
National Strategy /National Action Plan
The Danish Government adopted its first National Action Plan in 2002, entitled Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Women. In 2005, an appendix concerning child trafficking was added.
In 2007, the second National Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human Beings (2007-2010) was adopted. It set out the following goals:
- to strengthen investigations in order to identify and punish the offenders;
- to support victims by strengthening the social protection offered in Denmark;
- to prevent human trafficking by increasing knowledge of the phenomenon among the general public and thereby limiting the demand for services provided by victims of human trafficking;
- to prevent human trafficking by improving international cooperation, including the pre-emptive work carried out in origin countries.
The scope of the second National Action Plan was extended to include separate sections for trafficking in women, child trafficking, and trafficking into forced labour. Additionally, special focus was put on prostitution and irregular migration.
The second National Action Plan also includes a number of concrete goals:
- To establish a knowledge and coordination centre for human trafficking (the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking) by 2007;
- To have three operating shelters ready to receive victims of human trafficking by 2007;
- For Denmark to have put the social consequences of human trafficking on the agenda in international fora, such as the EU and the Nordic Council of Ministers by 2007;
- For a scheme to have been established, which means that all registered victims of human trafficking are offered assistance to voluntary return, by 2008;
- For at least 10 per cent of the population to be aware of the issues of human trafficking and know how to react if they learn of human trafficking, by 2009;
- For all children and at least 40 per cent of the women who are registered as victims of human trafficking to have received social assistance and support for assisted return to their home country in collaboration with local NGOs, by 2009;
- For at least 50 per cent of victims to have received help in their home country for rehabilitation by 2009.
In the beginning of 2010, the inter-ministerial working group, mentioned under paragraph 1, ordered an evaluation on the implementation of the second National Action Plan with a view to assessing the need for further action
Coordination of anti-trafficking actions at a national level
Aninter-ministerial working group on human trafficking was established in the Department of Gender Equality in 2002 to coordinate anti-trafficking measures related to the exploitation of women and - since 2005 –-children.
In 2007, the mandate of the group was revised to cover all forms of trafficking. The Department of Gender Equality is organised under the Ministry of Climate and Energy.
Other competent ministries with responsibilities in the field include the Ministry of Social Affairs, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Refugees, Immigration and Integration Affairs, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Interior and Health.
The National Rapporteur or equivalent mechanism
The Danish government has not appointed a National Rapporteur.
However, both the National Centre of Investigation (NCI) of the Danish National Police and the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking (CMM) monitor activities and the impact of anti-trafficking efforts in Denmark, cooperating with other government and law enforcement agencies on documentation and developments within the area.
3. IMPLEMENTATION OF ANTI-TRAFFICKING POLICY
Efforts to prevent human trafficking in Denmark have included awareness-raising campaigns.
In 2006, the Minister for Gender Equality launched an information and debate campaign about trafficking in women for sexual exploitation. The campaign – which bore the title ‘You have a choice – she doesn’t’ – was published in newspapers, on television and in cinemas.
The same year, the Minister for Gender Equality also launched a web-based campaign with study material and exercises aimed at students in the final years of primary school. The campaign covers various themes related to human trafficking, such as prostitution and sexual exploitation, which are dealt with in videos, student exercise tasks and case studies. In 2008, the government launched a campaign in schools called ”Who is paying the price?” The campaign aimed at reducing the demand for commercial sex among young men. The government partially funded a nongovernmental organization to conduct an anti-trafficking awareness campaign in cinemas and in the media. Furthermore, the government also funded a public service campaign in 2008 to make the general public aware of new jurisdiction rules concerning the sexual abuse of children abroad.
In 2009, the Department of Gender Equality and the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking ordered a survey to establish the general public’s knowledge of human trafficking. According to the survey, 87% of respondents had heard of more than one kind of human trafficking and two thirds of the respondents would contact the police if they became aware that a person had been trafficked.
Assistance and support to victims
The social effort in the field of human trafficking consists of three parts:
- to seek out and make contacts with individuals who might have been subjected to human trafficking;
- to identify victims of human trafficking;
- to provide victims of human trafficking with assistance and support.
The reaching-out casework takes place in massage parlours, on the street, in escort environments, via the internet, in asylum seeker centres and in prisons. Furthermore, a special hotline has been established, primarily targeting victims of trafficking, collaborators and members of the general public, who wish to report human trafficking. In Copenhagen, a meeting place for foreign women in prostitution has also been set up.
Trafficked foreigners who seek asylum or stay illegally in Denmark are – like other asylum seekers and foreigners without permission to stay in Denmark – supported by the Danish Immigration Service. The said persons are entitled to receive the same offers as other illegal immigrants regarding accommodation, health care, counselling etc. but will also receive extended offers of safe shelter, psychological assistance, health and social-pedagogical support etc.
Some of these activities are carried out in collaboration with the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking. In 2007-2010, the Danish Government devoted 80 million DKK (10.8 million EUR) to the implementation of the National Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human beings.
The Danish Anti-Trafficking Centre
In 2007, the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking was established. The Centre manages the social dimensions of the National Action Plan and has three executive goals:
- To improve social assistance to victims of human trafficking nationwide, and to render protection and support to victims of human trafficking;
- To coordinate collaboration between social organisations and other public authorities;
- To collect and convey knowledge in the field of human trafficking.
The centre is organised under the National Board of Social Services and reports to the Department of Gender Equality, under the Ministry of Climate and Energy.
In the field of responsibility of the Ministry of Refugee, Immigration and Integration Affairs, several initiatives from the latest action plan are implied by legislation, and on 1 August 2007 an amendment to the Danish Aliens Act came into force.
Among other things, an administrative practice according to which trafficked foreigners were granted a 30 day reflection period was fixed by law. Furthermore, the possibility of extending the reflection period and return date from the original 30 days to a maximum of 100 days was introduced. Technically, the reflection period is still considered a postponement of the return to the country of origin.
The first 30 days are given unconditionally if the individual is identified as a victim of trafficking. The additional 70 days are offered only if the victim agrees to cooperate with the authorities for the preparation of his/her return to the country of origin or if there is special circumstances. The reflection period does not grant the victim the right to work as it is not a residence permit.
The purpose of the reflection period is to empower the victim, and thereby reduce the risk of re-victimization, which trafficking victims often face upon return to the country of origin.
During the reflection period, the victim is offered extended assistance and support measures, including safe accommodation, psychological assistance, legal and social/educational counselling, as well as access to health services. Furthermore, all trafficked foreigners who have to leave Denmark are offered a prepared repatriation. This offer includes among other things that reception by a social organization or NGO in the country of origin will be arranged when possible, and that a reintegration plan will be drawn up.
In 2008, the Danish Immigration Service signed a contract with the International Organization for Migration (IOM). IOM assists and prepares rehabilitation programs for all trafficked persons who return voluntarily. The program deals with reception, accommodation, medical care, psycho-social care and counselling, on-the-job training, education, and, if possible, a job in the country of origin, covering the first three months after the return of the victim.
The offers of aid under the Aliens Act are not conditional on a trafficked foreigner’s willingness to participate in criminal investigations or proceedings.
According to the Danish Aliens Act, a residence permit cannot be granted only for the reason that an alien has been exposed to trafficking. However, trafficked foreigners who risk persecution in their home country can be granted asylum. A residence permit on humanitarian grounds can be granted if significant humanitarian considerations warrant it, for example if the said person suffers from a serious physical or psychological illness. A residence permit can also be granted if exceptional reasons make it appropriate.
Besides this, temporary residence permits may be granted to trafficked foreigners, if the said person's stay in Denmark is necessary for criminal investigations or proceedings to take place.
Special protective measures for children
Child victims of trafficking constitute a particularly vulnerable group with special needs. This group requires special help on an individual basis. In Denmark, the help is provided by different stakeholders and authorities working together to assist and support child victims. Children who are victims of trafficking will receive social/pedagogical support and are provided with appropriate psychological assistance and health care.
While the child is placed in safe surroundings, which might be either in an asylum centre – if the child applies for asylum or stays illegally in Denmark – which employs specially trained staff to deal with this group of children, or else a governmental social institution, the child will have the possibility to attend different forms of education.
The Danish Aliens Act contains special rules regarding unaccompanied children. These rules cover all unaccompanied children who seek asylum or stay in Denmark illegally, as well as trafficked unaccompanied children. All unaccompanied children are assigned a personal representative, who supports and cares for the child. If the child has been exposed to trafficking, the personal representative will be a professional, for instance a social service worker.
The Danish Immigration Service draws up an action plan for the continued work for the benefit of the child in collaboration with the personal representative. The representative can also provide advice and support in more personal matters and take decisions on behalf of the child.
According to the Danish Aliens Act the parents of unaccompanied minors will be searched for in all cases –also including if the child does not consent – if this will be in the best interest of the child. These rules also concern trafficked unaccompanied children. However, if the parents of the child have been involved in the trafficking, they will not be searched for with the intention of reuniting them with the child, and information about their involvement will be forwarded to the authorities in their home country.
Furthermore, all unaccompanied minors who are not granted a residence permit in Denmark are offered a prepared repatriation, which among other things includes meeting with a family member, a social organization etc. in the country of origin, who can give the child the assistance, protection and care that is necessary for life in their home country. As mentioned in section 3.2, the Danish Immigration Service has signed a contract with IOM concerning a repatriation and reception project for vulnerable migrants. This project also includes unaccompanied minors. In collaboration with Save the Children and Danish Red Cross, The Danish Centre against Human Trafficking collects and publishes data on child victims of trafficking. Since 2009 the centre has also been involved in assessing whether children might have been subjected to trafficking in human beings.
So far, the number of assessed child trafficking cases has been relatively low compared to the number of adult victims of human trafficking.
Investigation and prosecution
The National Centre of Investigation (NCI) of the Danish National Police is, together with the local police districts, responsible for criminal investigations regarding human trafficking in Denmark.
The NCI receives reports and collects data from the local police districts in all cases of human trafficking. It also prepares an annual report to the Danish Parliament on trafficking efforts, which contains statistical information including the number of criminal investigations, prosecutions and convictions.
In 2008, a special anti-trafficking unit was established within the Copenhagen Police. The unit mainly handles cases that involve trafficking in women for sexual purposes.
Number of investigations and prosecutions
According to the 2010 United States State Department Trafficking in Persons Report, the police reported conducting a total of 44 human trafficking investigations during 2009. Using Section 262, the government prosecuted 25 persons for sex trafficking and convicted 11 sex trafficking offenders in 2009. The government prosecuted additional alleged sex trafficking offenders under other statutes, such as prostitution procurement. All 11 trafficking offenders convicted in 2009 served some time in prison. The sentences for convicted trafficking offenders ranged from five to 42 months’ imprisonment.
Other latest initiatives/activities, challenges related to anti-trafficking policy
The third national action plan to combat human trafficking was launched in June 2011. It focuses on all forms of exploitation, looking at both identification of and support to VICTIMS OF TRAFFICKING’s, prevention of trafficking in Denmark and internationally as well as identification and prosecution of the traffickers.
An English version of the action plan can be found at:
National Referral Mechanism
The Danish Centre against Human Trafficking is a key actor/stakeholder in the national referral mechanism. The main objectives of the centre are to develop and improve the social assistance to victims of trafficking and to co-ordinate collaboration between governmental and non-governmental stakeholders in the field.
Several efforts, namely nationwide outreach work, procedures for corporation between the police, the Immigration Service, the tax authorities etc. and training of relevant personal, aim to ensure early identification and support in accordance with the national action plan. The Centre against Human Trafficking plays an important role in the identification process and holds contracts with NGOs in order to conduct outreach work, drop in centres and shelters. The Centre also operates a hotline open all days throughout the year.
Additionally, a system of regional and national referral groups has been devised by the Centre against Human Trafficking in order to create a forum of co-operation and dialogue between governmental and non-governmental organisations. The aim of these groups is to ensure that all actors involved in anti-trafficking efforts are linked to the implementation of the national action plan. The national referral group is responsible for setting up a common framework, and the main aim is to exchange information, co-ordinate procedures and develop good practises, discuss matters of principle and alert partners of new trends and new initiatives. The group meets on a quarterly basis and feeds information or challenges into an inter-ministerial working group on human trafficking.
The six regional referral groups are active throughout the country and ensure the involvement of local actors and regional readiness to deal with cases of human trafficking. The regional groups meet four times a year and exchange information, discuss procedures and provide training. Social workers, various NGOs, the police, representatives from local municipalities and trade unions participate in the regional referral groups. One person from each regional group is represented in the national group.
It should be noted that in case of a person who seeks asylum or are illegally present in Denmark, the Danish Immigration Service has the authority to grant the status of a victim of trafficking. In case of persons staying on a legal basis in Denmark, the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking has the authority to grant the status of a victim of trafficking.
4. EU AND INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
Denmark supports the prevention and combating of human trafficking through a range of international initiatives.
The “Neighbourhood Program” under the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs aims at combating trafficking in human beings in Eastern Europe (mainly Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine – but Bulgaria and Romania are also included). Based on a human rights-focused agenda, the overall goal of the program is to support national government agencies, international organizations and NGOs’ efforts to combat human trafficking. The program comprises both preventive activities and support measures for victims of trafficking in human beings.
Denmark is also a member of the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) Task Force against Trafficking in Human Beings (for more information on international activities see the Government’s Action Plan to Combat Trafficking in Human beings (2007 - 2010).
Between 2005 and 2008, Denmark participated in a regional initiative implemented under the auspices of the Nordic-Baltic Project. The project aimed to help build a network to facilitate regional referral for female victims of trafficking for sexual exploitation. The Nordic Pilot Project for the Support, Protection, Safe Return and Rehabilitation of Women Victims of Trafficking in Human Beings for Sexual Exploitation was implemented by the European Women’s Lobby. Other countries involved were Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden.
In 2008, the Danish Immigration Service established a partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) to facilitate safe return and rehabilitation programs for victims of trafficking who voluntarily return to their countries of origin.
Furthermore, the Danish government is involved in numerous international and regional anti-trafficking working groups. For example, the National Center of Investigation (NCI) is involved in cooperation between Nordic countries, the Baltic Sea cooperation on organised crime, Europol and Interpol.
Ongoing work on the implementation of the Directive 2011/36/EU
The Directive 2011/36/EU is covered by Denmark's opt-out regarding judicial and internal matters and does therefore not apply in Denmark, but Denmark has followed some of the recommendations from the Directive e.g. (crime against) THB has in theCriminal Code raised the penalty from 8 to 10 years imprisonment. In addition hereto, Denmark has now criminalized the exploitation of THB-victims thourgh criminal offenses.
5. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
The vast majority of people trafficked to Denmark are trafficked for sexual purposes. However, in recent years, occurrences of human trafficking for forced labour in Norway, Sweden and a number of (other) EU countries, indicate a risk that trafficking for forced labour may well be taking place in Denmark as well. The Danish Centre against Human Trafficking therefore intends to examine occupational fields, in which trafficking for forced labour could occur.
As a first step in this effort, the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking has published a report on the prevalence and risks of human trafficking amongst au pairs in Denmark. The report is based on a qualitative study with interviews with 27 au pairs from different countries living in Denmark. The study showed that none of the interviewed au pairs had been subjected to human trafficking.
This study of whether trafficking is occurring in connection with the Danish au pair system is the first in a planned series of studies carried out by the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking on the prevalence of trafficking for forced labour within various occupational fields in Denmark. Two future studies will deal with the prevalence of human trafficking amongst Eastern European farm workers and migrants working in the cleaning industry in Denmark.
In 2009,the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking established a partnership with labour organizations and relevant public authorities aimed at identifying occurrences of forced labour within a number of special risk areas, such as the agricultural industry, construction industry, and house cleaning.
In 2010, the Danish authorities asked the independent consulting group COWI to evaluate the implementation of the second National Action Plan and to assess the need for further action.
6.2 National Action Plans
6.3.1 National reports on implementation
6.3.2 Other reports and publications
Links to reports can be found on the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking website.
- 6.3.1 National reports on implementation
The Department for Gender Equality
Holmens Kanal 20, P.O. Box 2150, 1016 Copenhagen
Telehone: +45 72 26 97 80
The Danish Anti-Trafficking Centre
Aabenraa 5, 1, 1124 Copenhagen K
Telephone: +45 72 42 38 23 or +45 33 17 09 00
E-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Danish National Police
Stoltenbergsgade 9, Polititorvet 14, 1780 Copenhagen V
Telephone: 33 14 88 88
Danish Immigration Service
Ryesgade 53, 2100 Copenhagen Ø
Telephone: +45 35 36 66 00
Danish Red Cross
Blegdamsvej 27, 2100 København Ø
Telephone: +45 35 25 92 00
Website: http://www.drk.dk/dansk+rode+kors+-+forside (in Danish)
2400 København NV
Telephone: +45 24 94 76 22
Sjællandsgade 98 B st.tv. 7000 Fredericia
Telephone: +45 7593 2169
Save the Children Denmark
Rosenørns Allé 12, 1634 Copenhagen V
Telephone: +45 3536 5555
Frederiksberg Alle 9, 1621 Copenhagen V
Tel: 3331 4192 |
The Nest International
Colbjørnsensgade 12, st. tv. 1652 Copenhagen V
Telephone: ++45 33 91 48 10
CBSS Council of the Baltic Sea States CMM Danish Centre against Human Trafficking IOM International Organization for Migration NCI Centre of Investigation (NCI) of the Danish National Police
- 6.1 Legislation
Table of Contents
- 1. GENERAL INFORMATION
- 2. INSTITUTIONAL AND LEGAL FRAMEWORK
- 3. IMPLEMENTATION OF ANTI-TRAFFICKING POLICY
- 4. EU AND INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION
- Identification of trafficking victims and subsequent investigative measures Dates: 06/06/2013 - 06/06/2013
- Prostitution and trafficking in women: what has Poland got to do with it? Dates: 25/06/2013 - 25/06/2013
- more »