Protecting Victims of Trafficking in Human Beings in the UK: The Italian 'Rimini Method' that Could Influence the British Approach
Journal of Migration and Refugee Issues, Vol. 3, No. 2, 2007
23 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2007
Victims of human trafficking should be protected to prevent their re-victimisation. This article compares the way the United Kingdom (UK) and Italy protect victims of human trafficking. The reason for this comparison is because the UK does not have any specific law that grants a residence permit to victims of human trafficking. The only way victims could be protected in the UK is when they can demonstrate their rights under the Refugee Convention or the European Convention on Human Rights. In contrast, Italian law establishes the issue of a residence permit to victims of human trafficking. Unfortunately, rarely this law is applied and often victims are confused with other irregular migrants and criminals and expelled. In an Italian city called Rimini, Italian law has been adequately applied and the phenomenon of trafficking in human beings has been completely defeated. In the article, the Rimini Method is described. Moreover, the findings of interviews held in Rimini with the head of the Italian Police in Rimini and with the responsible of an anti-trafficking organization which supported the Police in Rimini are shown, with the aim to explain how trafficking in human beings in Rimini has been defeated. Finally, this article argues that the UK should follow this example and a first step to protect victims of human trafficking should be, as the British Joint Committee on Human Rights highlighted, to sign and ratify the Council of Europe Convention on Actions against Trafficking in Human Beings.
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