Building Awareness About Trafficking in Persons (TIP)
Thanks to Afghan Police and Lawyers: Learn about the Trafficking in Persons law that should protect and support victims
We often tell you the stories of those whose lives are being transformed through the work of Hagar, women trafficked by those who should be caring for them, young wives beaten and abused by violent husbands or young girls sold in to marriage with older men.
These stories are hard to read, yet there is hope in seeing the healing that comes and the future that is possible. But there are many who are still crying out for help. For some, their only hope is to go to the police. But what happens if the policeman doesn’t understand and only sees her as a criminal because she’s run away from her husband or is alone without a male relative as an escort? What if the judge also doesn’t understand and only knows one option? Prisons are full of women who have been wrongfully treated – because of lack of understanding by those who might otherwise have helped them.
In an effort to continue building awareness around Trafficking in Persons (TIP) and increase the capacity of Afghanistan’s judiciary, Hagar’s Trafficking in Persons Capacity Building Program (TIPCAP) held a five day training workshop in Bamyian, a central province in Afghanistan which was attended by 42 participants; seven defence attorneys (who provide legal aid services in detention centres); five Presidential attorneys (whose mandate is to stop violence against women, investigate crimes, and monitor and implement the law); 10 Police Officers, and 20 participants from the Directorate of Women Affairs Legal Aid unit and the Women’s Shurah (Elders). This is just one of many provincial workshops Hagar runs in Afghanistan. Topics covered include the Afghanistan’s Anti-trafficking law, how it can and should be used to support victims and prosecute traffickers, as well as other key TIP issues, such as terminology, identification of victims and the importance of investigating such cases and seeking prosecution for perpetrators.
Just recently, an article came out highlighting the issue of women being bought and sold, some times to new husbands in Pakistan. This practice is becoming more and more common, especially when young women become widows, or are unwanted by their husbands:
News like this has not escaped the ears of TIPCAP, who are now in the beginning stages of a new initiative – that of cross-border collaboration! This initiative will seek to ensure better identification of victims of trafficking, provide safe referrals and assist in repatriation, as well as raise awareness on the importance of deterring traffickers and preventing trafficking.