On the 16 th of April, 2014 a meeting of the multi-disciplinary task force in Gomel took place. The main responsibility of the task force is to identify, refer and provide assistance to VoTs in Gomel oblast; to strengthen NRM in Gomel oblast, to share experience, information and latest statistics in the field of combating and prevention of trafficking in human beings.
The meeting of the task force was chaired by the Chief of Mission of IOM – Zeynal HAJIYEV; National Project Coordinator/Deputy chairperson of the Department/ Chairperson of the second unit on combating trafficking in drugs and human beings of the criminal militia of the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Belarus, Sergey KOLTUN and Coordinator of the International Technical Assistance Project “Building the capacity of the Republic of Belarus in the field of combating trafficking in human beings” – Natalia ZHAK. Meeting of the multi-disciplinary task force was organized with technical and organizational support of the Red Cross Organization. The meeting was attended by the representatives of the agencies, which signed the MoU and other interested organizations, including: Department of the Interior Affairs, of labor and social welfare, of migration and citizenship, investigation committee, bar association, Gomel oblast executive committee – department on ideology and Gomel oblast NGOs, including Red Cross and Gomel BYWCA.
During the meeting all the representatives had an opportunity to share the latest information and statistics and to talk about the latest trends in the field of THB in Gomel region, special attention was given to the issue of rendering assistance to victims of trafficking and to the issue of labor exploitation of Belarus citizens in Russia and their identification as VoTs, also discussions were focused on the cases of children who suffered from sexual violence and the necessity to improve responses of both state and non-state actors in this regards.
In the course of the work of the task force it was decided:
– to more actively engage into sharing information and statistics between the interested parties of the MoU in the field of prevention of THB and provision of assistance to VoTs;
– to more actively suggest ideas for joint efforts in prevention of THB in Gomel oblast;
– to adhere to the principles of confidentiality for all the information on trafficking cases and to observe the human rights and private security of VoTs;
– to organize joint preventive actions and initiatives and to inform people about the possibilities of trapping into slavery conditions when searching for a job in Russia;
– to more actively attract the resource of the bar association for provision of legal assistance to the victims of trafficking;
– to establish сontacts with the workers of the interviewing rooms for children and to use these rooms for recording the information during child`s interview for the purpose of further use within criminal investigations;
– to engage journalists into prevention of THB in the region and to educate them regarding the preparation of articles on this topic;
– the representatives of NGOs of Gomel oblast should actively participate in developing of their offers for participation in the system of social sub-contraction;
– to introduce changes into the text of MoU, particularly, to add items about the New State Programme for 2013 – 2015; about Belarus joining the Council of Europe Convention on combating trafficking in human beings and the article about adhering to the principles of confidentiality when working with VoTs;
– to widen the list of the MoU participants with the representatives of the court, prosecutor`s office, investigation committee, department on citizenship and migration, Gomel “BYWCA” NGO.