Opportunities and Obstacles: Ensuring access to compensation for trafficked persons in the UK
Anti-Slavery International, 2008, 56 pages
This report examines what options trafficked persons have to seek compensation for their injuries and suffering under UK law. Although there has been an increase in the number of convictions for human trafficking in the UK, legal remedies and compensation for trafficked persons have remained inaccessible. The report identifies the legal remedies available to trafficked persons in England and Wales and analyses the effectiveness of each remedy viewed in light of its accessibility to trafficked persons. It also finds that the ability to pursue compensation is not simply a function of the sufficiency of existing legal remedies. It is also dependent on the attitudes and mindset of policymakers and law enforcement, as well as the awareness of judiciary and prosecution.
The review of opportunities and obstacles to justice for trafficked persons in the UK clearly shows that the existence of legal provisions for compensation is insufficient to ensure that they are accessible to trafficked persons.
The report highlights a number of policy recommendations:
- Mainstream the issue of compensation into UK anti-trafficking policy.
- Provide trafficked persons with a temporary residence permit as a part of the Council of Europe Convention implementation, to enable them to initiate a claim for compensation if they so choose.
- Issue guidance and training on the use of compensation orders in human trafficking cases.
- Extend employment law protections to enable all workers to enforce core statutory employment rights, regardless of their immigration status.
- Ensure that trafficked persons have access, from their first contact with the competent authorities, to information on relevant judicial and administrative proceedings regarding compensation in a language they understand.
Note that the publication date is indicative.