|Guyana says the US assessment is unjustified|
A Guyana government official has dismissed the just released US government report on human trafficking.
The report gives Guyana a Tier Two ranking, which means the nation has been deemed as not increasing efforts to combat human trafficking over the past year.
The document also suggests there are a significant number of trafficking victims.
Minjster of Labour and Social Security, Priya Manikchand, pointed out that in its 2009 report the US State Department acknowledged that Guyana was making significant efforts to combat human trafficking.
She also said there are onging public awareness programmes on human trafficking as well as training for officers to deal with the crime.
The minister denied that there was any evidence of a significant number of victims, adding that Guyana’s ranking was therefore unjustified.
[Update via BBC News]
Jamaica has retained its Tier- 2 status in the 2010 US State Department Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP). Jamaica’s position at Tier- 2 remains the same as it was when the US released its report in 2009.
Countries, which fall in Tier-2, have governments that do not fully comply with the minimum standards but are making significant efforts to comply.
According to the report, “Jamaica is a source, transit, and destination country for women and children subjected to trafficking in persons, specifically conditions of forced prostitution and forced labor.”
The report made special mention of Jamaica’s garrison phenomenon playing a role in human trafficking.
“Trafficking is purported to occur within Jamaica’s poverty stricken garrison communities, territories ruled by criminal “dons” that are effectively outside of the government’s control. Some Jamaican women and girls have been subjected to forced prostitution in other countries such as Canada, the United States, the UK, The Bahamas, and other Caribbean destinations,” the report said.
The report also stated that some foreign victims have been forced into prostitution and domestic servitude.
The report said that a local non-governmental organisation working with street children reported, “that the forced labor of children in street vending is prevalent. Jamaican children also may be subjected to involuntary domestic servitude.”
It also said “there is widespread belief among the NGO community that many of the 1,859 Jamaican children that have gone missing in 2009 were trafficked.”
The TIP report ranks countries based on their level of compliance on established minimum standards for the elimination of human trafficking. There are three tiers. Tier-3 is where a government does not fully comply with minimum standards and are not making significant efforts to do so.
Tier- 1 are countries, which fully comply with minimum standards of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act.
[Update via Go-Jamaica]