National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking
2014-2015 Annual Report on Progress

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Foreword

This is the third Annual Report on Progress on the implementation of Canada's National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking (National Action Plan),which was launched on June 6, 2012. It covers the period of April 1, 2014 - March 31, 2015. To promote consistency and underline the flow of implementation from year to year, this report follows the format of previous versions.

Federal commitments under the National Action Plan are situated within the internationally recognized '4-Ps' approach: prevention, protection, prosecution and partnerships; they are being implemented with the cooperation and collaboration of the federal departments and agencies that make up the Human Trafficking Taskforce.

The National Action Plan is a living plan. As new information about the scope and nature of human trafficking in Canada comes to light, the Government of Canada will continue to enhance its efforts, informed by its commitment to engage with stakeholders and experts across the country on an ongoing basis toward combatting human trafficking in all its forms.

Key achievements in support of the National Action Plan in 2014-2015 include:

These achievements and others undertaken in 2014-2015 are outlined in the following pages. This report also provides an overview of the way forward in 2015-2016 as informed by consultations, engagement with stakeholders, data collection and research undertaken in 2012-2013, 2013-2014 and 2014-2015.

The Government continues to enhance efforts to ensure that human trafficking is addressed within Canada's borders, victims will be protected and assisted, and perpetrators will be brought to justice.

Introduction

What is Human Trafficking?

Human Trafficking, often described as a modern-day form of slavery, involves the recruitment, transportation, harbouring and/or exercising control, direction or influence over the movement of a person in order to exploit that person, typically through sexual exploitation or forced labour. Traffickers control their victims in various ways, such as taking away their identity documents and passports, sexual abuse, threats, intimidation, physical violence, and isolation.

Organized criminal networks and individuals perpetrate this crime, operating domestically and across borders. Traffickers reap large profits while robbing victims of their freedom, dignity, and human potential, at great cost to the individual and to society at large. Human trafficking represents a consistent and pervasive assault on the fundamental human rights of its victims.

Human Trafficking in Canada

Human trafficking for sexual exploitation continues to constitute the majority of known trafficking cases faced by law enforcement across Canada. It most often occurs in large urban centres and most victims are Canadian women. However, more evidence of human trafficking for forced labour, which often involves foreign nationals, has come to light in recent years.Note 1

Vulnerable groups at risk of human trafficking continue to include Aboriginal women, youth and children, migrants and new immigrants, at-risk youth, runaways, and those who are socially or economically disadvantaged. At the same time, there have been an increasing number of cases where young girls and women who may not be considered socially or economically disadvantaged are simply manipulated into believing that they are in an exclusive romantic relationship with an individual who in turn uses that relationship as a means of controlling the victim in order to exploit them.

Human trafficking in Canada is as likely to be orchestrated by organized criminal networks as it is by individual or family-based opportunists. With respect to domestic human trafficking, some individuals convicted were affiliated with street gangs. The victims have mostly been recruited through the Internet, by an acquaintance or directly by the trafficker. They were groomed, manipulated, and coerced to provide sexual services to others. In some cases, the victims have been exploited in locations such as exotic dance clubs and/or escort services. Some traffickers provided fraudulent identification for their victims to feign legitimate age.

Human Trafficking Offences in Canada Although the extent of human trafficking (for the purpose of sexual exploitation or forced labour) is difficult to determine, the following available statistics (to August 2015) provide some context:

For cases involving foreign national victims, suspects involved in human trafficking activities mostly operate with associates of similar ethnicity and have ethnic ties to the source countries of their victims. For example, intelligence suggests that organized crime networks with Eastern European links have been involved in the organized entry of women from states formerly part of the Soviet Union into Canada for employment in escort services in the Greater Toronto Area and possibly in massage and escort services in the Montreal area. These groups have demonstrated transnational capabilities and significant associations with convicted human traffickers in various countries.

Human trafficking has also been identified in major cities with a large Asian population and an established network of Asian organized crime. Trafficking for sexual exploitation often occurs in private residences operated and staffed solely by Asian migrants or persons of Asian descent. Some Asian women were initially recruited for legitimate employment, but were ultimately coerced into selling sexual services once they arrived in Canada. This recruitment process may occur within Canada; most Asian women in these circumstances found employment from advertisements in Canadian media. Law enforcement intelligence indicates that some of these women travel inter-provincially, between Canadian cities, to engage in prostitution in Asian bawdy houses. Owner-operators operate more than one location simultaneously and rotate their workers between locations or between other owner-operators. Intelligence suggests that not all owner-operators coerce their workers into providing sexual services.

Findings of the recent RCMP threat assessment on domestic human trafficking for sexual exploitation ('Project SAFEKEEPING')Note 2 indicate that large profits are the primary motivation for individuals to engage in human trafficking. As well, while traffickers are usually male, females are increasingly involved as human traffickers. Female traffickers usually work with at least one male. The majority of traffickers are adults, however, underage (under the age of 18 years) males and females are increasingly becoming involved in human trafficking. Underage traffickers commonly work in partnership with other adults and almost always exploit underage victims.

Progress to Date

The Human Trafficking Taskforce (the Taskforce), led by Public Safety Canada (PS) and comprised of key federal departmentsNote 3, remains the federal body responsible for coordinating the Government of Canada's response to human trafficking. The Taskforce oversees the implementation of the National Action Plan commitments under the '4-Ps' and reports annually on progress to the public. The Taskforce met on a regular basis throughout 2014-2015.

The Prevention and Partnership sub-working group and the Prosecution and Protection sub-working group, whose primary purpose is to support the Taskforce in the implementation of the National Action Plan, have continued to meet as required.

The following pages highlight the progress made on the implementation of the National Action Plan in 2014-2015.Note 4

Part I. Prevention

The Government of Canada will support a broad-based prevention strategy focusing on awareness-raising and research activities to prevent human trafficking.

General and targeted awareness raising and education remain integral to Canada's prevention efforts.  In 2014-2015, the Government of Canada continued to build on these efforts with a number of initiatives.

2014-2015 Key Achievements:

As previously reported, in December 2012, PS, in collaboration with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) entered into a partnership with the National Association of Friendship Centres for the development of a national awareness campaign on domestic sex trafficking involving Aboriginal victims living on and off reserves and in rural, urban and northern communities, in order to help prevent victimization. This campaign, which includes four human trafficking public service announcements developed by Aboriginal youth from different regions in Canada, is available across the country.Note 5

Through INAC's Aboriginal Representation Process (ARO), funding is distributed to projects that partner with national stakeholders to create awareness campaigns, research, videoconference workshops and other activities aimed at promoting family violence prevention awareness.

In 2014-2015, INAC funded $75,000 through the ARO process to the Native Women's Association to develop a Handbook for helping sexually exploited Aboriginal women and girls. The handbook Our Spirits are NOT for sale can be found at: http://www.nwac.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Our-Spirits-are-NOT-for-sale-English-web-version.pdf.

The RCMP Human Trafficking National Coordination Centre (HTNCC) continued its distribution, of the “I'm Not for Sale” campaign to Aboriginal communities and groups throughout Canada. Since 2013, approximately 31,454 toolkits and 977 Aboriginal specific posters have been distributed.

In 2014-2015, the Government published a “Canada's Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter”, which includes updates on federal efforts, as well as highlighting work being done by stakeholders across Canada. The newsletter is published up to four times annually and is available on the PS website. During the last year, contributions to the newsletter were made by four human trafficking stakeholders and two provinces, as well as several federal departments and agencies. The newsletter provides valuable and highly accessible summary of events and initiatives occurring across Canada.

The RCMP HTNCC webpage continues to provide updates pertaining to human trafficking cases and convictions.

Global Affairs Canada (GAC) provides assistance to other governments as well as funding to a number of international organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that work with governments to address human trafficking, with a core focus on prevention, protection and rehabilitation of trafficking victims and integrating gender equality as a cross-cutting concern. Humanitarian assistance in response to typhoon Haiyan and the Syria crisis has also included activities to address the increased risks of human trafficking of women, girls and boys. Canada worked with partners to create safe and secure learning environments, produce child friendly spaces and provided psychosocial support to children, including unaccompanied children, at risk of being trafficked. In the context of Canada's international leadership around maternal, newborn and child health, significant new programming is also underway to support effective civil registration and vital statistics, including birth registration, which contributes to providing new trafficking prevention tools to national authorities.

Key GAC Achievement:

As an extension of Canada's international leadership on maternal, newborn and child health, Canada is working with partners to develop a common approach to support country-led efforts to strengthen their civil registration and vital statistics systems, including birth registration. Birth registration establishes the existence of the child under law and provides the foundation for safeguarding many of the child's civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights. Proof of age, provided by a birth certificate, is central to protecting children from situations of child labour, recruitment into armed forces, and trafficking. If children are separated from their families due to child trafficking, family reunification is facilitated through official birth registration. 

In recognition of the importance of birth registration, Canada is supporting the Global Financing Facility in support of Every Woman Every Child (GFF), which aims to end preventable maternal, child and adolescent death. The Facility will improve the lives of women and girls by eliminating the barriers to key health services for the most vulnerable and hard to reach.  Of Canada's $200 million contribution to the GFF, spread over 5 years (2015-2020), $100 million has been dedicated to strengthening civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) systems in eligible countries.

In addition to this investment, Canada is financing the establishment and start-up of a CRVS Centre of Excellence, housed at the International Development Research Centre. The Centre of Excellence will strengthen national CRVS systems of GFF countries by playing a knowledge translation function to facilitate information exchanges, networking, disseminate good practices and adopt global tools and standards. The Centre will also broker technical capacity building opportunities to fill capacity gaps in the 63 high-burden countries eligible for support through the GFF.

Finally, in December, 2014, the Office of Protocol of GAC, held a mandatory information session for approximately 55 domestic workers employed in diplomatic households in the Ottawa/Gatineau area, representing 37 countries/jurisdictions. The purpose of this session was to provide critical information to the domestic employees regarding their contractual rights & protections while addressing practical issues here in Canada. Awareness on human trafficking and relevant information, including the Crime Stoppers tip line and other relevant contact information were provided. Only two countries/jurisdictions were unable to free the domestic workers for the sessions, although collaborative and mitigation steps were taken with and by the Office of Protocol to relay the information to those concerned. In addition to this information session, GAC continues to conduct random and systematic compliancy verifications to ensure that foreign representatives in Canada who employ domestic workers are strictly adhering to Canadian labour law, taking remedial actions where necessary.

In response to requests for further information from stakeholders, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) updated its Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) website to announce stronger consequences for employers who violate conditions. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has also updated its website to reflect reforms that have had an impact on temporary foreign workers.

Additionally, the updated “Temporary Foreign Workers: Your Rights are Protected” pamphlet was distributed to stakeholders, including at the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWP) Intergovernmental Review Meeting, Canada-Mexico held in Ottawa (November 2014) and the Canada- Commonwealth Caribbean countries meeting held in Trinidad and Tobago (December 2014) and at various additional fora. The pamphlet is also available online in seven languages.

The Government of Canada will continue to build upon these initiatives and other prevention efforts already in place as new information on human trafficking in Canada becomes available, including information flowing out of ongoing engagement activities with partners and anti-trafficking stakeholders across the country.

Part II. Protection and Assistance for Victims

The Government of Canada will continue to assist all victims of crime, including trafficking victims; to work with the provinces and territories to deliver services responsive to the needs of trafficking victims; and to promote greater understanding of the needs of trafficked persons with a view to promoting their physical, psychological and social recovery.

In 2014-2015, the Government of Canada continued to undertake efforts towards the protection of, and assistance to, victims of human trafficking – both Canadian and foreign nationals. This included working with partners to develop resources and tools on how to identify and best respond to the needs of victims, supporting projects and initiatives to enhance services for victims, and efforts to ensure greater protection for those coming to Canada to work temporarily.

2014-2015 Key Achievements:

The Justice Canada (JUS) Victims' Fund provides grants and contributions to support projects and activities that encourage the development of new approaches, promote access to justice, improve the capacity of service providers, foster the establishment of referral networks, and/or increase awareness of services available to victims of crime and their families. As of April 1, 2013, the Victims Fund has made available up to $500,000 annually to support projects that enhance services for victims of human trafficking.

Projects funded under the JUS Victims Fund (2014-2015) included:

Currently, several Status of Women Canada (SWC) funded projects are underway to prevent and reduce the human trafficking of women and girls for the purposes of sexual exploitation through community planning. These projects are piloting the “Local Safety Audit Guide: To Prevent Trafficking in Persons and Related Exploitation”, which was developed by PS in 2012 as part of efforts toward prevention. The tool places particular emphasis on the vulnerability of Aboriginal women and girls and can be used to guide the public sector and civil society stakeholders to assess the nature and scope of trafficking and related exploitation, and to develop action plans tailored to specific local context.

Canadian women and girls represent the majority of victims of human trafficking in the country; however, foreign nationals have also been victimized. Since May 2006, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) officers have been authorized to issue temporary resident permits (TRPs) to foreign nationals who may be victims of human trafficking, to allow them to consider their options and receive assistance. In 2014, 34 temporary resident permits were issued to victims of human trafficking. This figure includes 24 subsequent temporary resident permits that were issued to victims of human trafficking to maintain legal status in Canada.

On June 20, 2014, the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (TFWP) was reorganized into two distinct programs. The TFWP refers to only those streams under which foreign workers enter Canada at the request of employers following the issuance of a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA). The new International Mobility Program (IMP) refers to those streams in which foreign nationals do not require an LMIA.

The overhaul of the TFWP included several new authorities and initiatives to enhance program integrity and strengthen protections for vulnerable workers. New activities include increasing the number of inspections conducted to verify compliance with TFWP/IMP conditions, including the requirement for employers to maintain a workplace free of abuse, and to provide the agreed to wages and working conditions.

New consequences came into effect on December 1, 2015. These new consequences provide proportionate responses to non-compliance committed by employers of foreign workers by replacing the single two-year ban with a range of ban periods (one, two, five, ten years as well as permanent bans where applicable), warnings, and new financial penalties ($500 to $100,000 per violation). When an employer is banned, or if they fail to pay their administrative monetary penalties (AMP) or follow a payment agreement, they will be ineligible to employ foreign nationals.

Additionally, program improvements implemented on November 30, 2014 removed the requirement that a caregiver live in the home of their employer. Caregivers are now able to live on their own or in the home of the employer, depending on the arrangement agreed to by both parties.  By removing the requirement to live in the employer's home as a condition for eventual permanent residence, the likelihood of caregivers being subjected to employer abuse is reduced. ESDC will continue to apply all existing worker protection measures to any temporary foreign workers working as caregivers, including those related to accommodations, where applicable. For those who do live in-home, there are special requirements for accommodations, including a locked door. Also, for the live-in arrangements, ESDC will no longer allow deductions from wages for accommodation, further reducing the vulnerability of caregivers.

ESDC continues to have the authority to revoke or refuse to process LMIAs for employers that have broken the rules. In these cases, the negative LMIA cannot be used to support a work permit request.

The TFWP continues to work closely with branches and other federal departments to enhance information sharing. The detection of abuse has been improved through the launch of an anonymous Tip Line and Online Fraud Reporting Tool. 

An individual providing representation or advice for a fee or other consideration to a foreign worker or to an employer at any stage of the work permit or to the employer's LMIA application process must be authorized to do so. Authorized representatives are members in good standing of a law society of a province (including paralegals), the Chambre des notaires du Québec, or the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC), the governing body for immigration consultants designated by IRCC. The Government of Canada does not conduct business with paid representatives who are not authorized under IRPA. This ensures that employers and workers are represented in a professional, competent and lawful manner and helps preserve the integrity of Canada's immigration programs.

Part III. Detection, Investigation and Prosecution of Traffickers

The Government of Canada will build on current efforts to bring traffickers to justice and to strengthen the criminal justice system's responses to this crime.

Project COMBATIVE

Concluded in spring 2014 with the laying of a number of charges related to human trafficking, (i.e. procuring and living off the avails of prostitution), Project COMBATIVE was a law enforcement investigation targeting a Romanian criminal organization involved in the smuggling and human trafficking of Romanian nationals in Canada. Marius MICLESCU TRIFU recruited young Romanian women, facilitated their illegal entry into Canada and forced them to offer sexual services in erotic massage parlors in the Montreal region.

Project COMBATIVE resulted in:

Efforts continue to better detect and investigate cases of human trafficking and to bring perpetrators to justice. Cases of human trafficking (for sexual exploitation and forced labour) are being more frequently identified, and more charges are being laid across the country. This is due, in part, to awareness and training efforts across all sectors, including within the criminal justice system (i.e., police, prosecutors and judges), intelligence and information sharing and the concerted efforts of law enforcement across jurisdictions. 

The Human Trafficking Unit, which is part of RCMP's Montreal-based ('C' Division) Immigration and Passport Section, continued to work closely with CBSA on human trafficking investigations and various human trafficking initiatives. This team contributes to the RCMP's National Strategy to Combat Human Trafficking and its country-wide efforts to reduce the number of victims. Announced in June 2012, the Strategy comprises a comprehensive action plan to combat human trafficking, which includes educating law enforcement officers, Crown prosecutors and border guards by conducting awareness campaigns and training in collaboration with other partners.

Update - The Immigration and Passport Section's Human Trafficking Unit (RCMP)

Since the beginning of 2014, the RCMP Human Trafficking Unit has conducted investigations into 16 suspected cases of human trafficking involving foreign nationals. Of these cases, 10 have been closed, four are currently under investigation, one has become a project considered among national and divisional RCMP priorities (Project CONFIDENCE) and one ended with arrests, charges and guilty pleas.

During the reporting period, the Human Trafficking Unit, in partnership with the Montreal Police Service, also conducted awareness interventions for sex-trade workers in massage parlours. This work raised awareness about the risks of falling victim to traffickers while working in the sex-trade and provided information about available supports. Furthermore, the Human Trafficking Awareness Coordinator for the Quebec Region continued to intervene with international victims of human trafficking in order to provide continuous support and offer available resources in the community.

In 2014, the RCMP HTNCC released Project SAFEKEEPING,a baseline threat assessment that provides insight into the nature and extent of domestic human trafficking for sexual exploitation in Canada. The findings of this report identify the characteristics of traffickers and victims, the vulnerabilities of victims, and the modus operandi of traffickers. The report also includes provincial overviews of domestic human trafficking for sexual exploitation, as well as current gaps and challenges pertaining to investigating this crime. Overall, the findings of Project SAFEKEEPING provide support to law enforcement, service providers, government organizations, and non-governmental organizations in their fight against this crime.Note 6

Project SECLUSION (published in 2010), continues to provide a national overview of human trafficking activities in an effort to identify the extent of organized crime involvement, transnational associations, source countries, as well as issues and challenges faced by law enforcement.   This trend analysis is currently being updated.

In 2014-2015, the RCMP HTNCC continued to deliver human trafficking training and awareness sessions. The RCMP delivered these sessions to a wide audience including law enforcement officials, prosecutors, government employees, non-governmental organizations and Canadian youth.

Over the past several years the RCMP HTNCC and ESDC (Labour Program) have partnered to raise awareness on human trafficking for forced labour among provincial labour inspectors and other labour officials, including providing information about indicators of human trafficking, industries at risk, and possible areas of cooperation between federal, provincial, territorial labour officials, law enforcement and other implicated parties. The sessions include information such as basic awareness, intelligence, and indicators of human trafficking for forced labour, industries and workers at risk, as well as various case studies. Since migrant or foreign workers are potentially at risk, raising awareness among front line labour inspectors may help mitigate the risk and identify potential victims. As a result of these sessions, tips on potential forced labour cases could be reported to the authorities.

Awareness sessions have taken place in the provinces of Newfoundland and Labrador, Alberta, Ontario, and Quebec since 2010, with the latest occurring in Manitoba in April 2014. Approximately 320 labour officials have benefited from the sessions so far. Such presentations can be delivered, upon request, to other labour department officials and inspectors across the country.

ESDC (TFWP) will continue to monitor the new Tip Line and Online Fraud Reporting Tool to identify improvements.

In March 2015, the updated “Handbook for Criminal Justice Practitioners on Trafficking in Persons”, endorsed by the Federal/Provincial/Territorial (FPT) Ministers Responsible for Justice in 2013, was published and has since been distributed to law enforcement across the country. The purpose of the Handbook is to provide criminal justice practitioners with guidance in the investigation and prosecution of human trafficking cases. The Handbook is now available online on Justice Canada's website. (http://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/rp-pr/cj-jp/tp/index.html)

The Government of Canada (JUS) continued to work closely with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to promote the development of tools to improve the capacity of the international community to criminalize, investigate and prosecute human trafficking. During 2014-2015, Justice Canada worked closely with the UNODC in its development of an Issues Paper examining the definition of exploitation in the Trafficking Protocol.

The CBSA collected, analyzed, produced and disseminated intelligence materials related to human trafficking with relevant internal and external stakeholders. As trends are identified, reports on human trafficking are widely disseminated to senior executives, operational managers, front-line officers and Liaison Officers, as well as to federal partners such as the RCMP, IRCC and PS.

The above represents highlights of some of the activities undertaken to support the detection, investigation and prosecution of human trafficking cases by the Government of Canada in 2014-2015. The Government will continue to build on these efforts in the future.

Part IV. Partnership and Knowledge

The Government of Canada will strengthen its relationship with relevant stakeholders to facilitate the ongoing development of effective policies and tools, to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated approach; and work to improve its ability to collect, track and report on data related to human trafficking in order to enhance knowledge and adapt our response appropriately, both domestically and on the international stage.

The establishment of strong and effective partnerships, across all sectors, is critical to combatting human trafficking in Canada and internationally. A comprehensive understanding of this constantly evolving crime is integral to the implementation of appropriate responses.

The Government continued in 2014-2015 to undertake and seek out new and innovative ways to enhance engagement and promote partnerships at the local, regional, national and international levels to support anti-human trafficking efforts, while striving to increase its knowledge of the issue through research and data collection.

2014-2015 Key Achievements:

Through regular conference calls – one focusing on human trafficking generally and the other on labour trafficking specifically - the Government continued to engage with its provincial-territorial partners throughout 2014-2015. These calls provide FPT stakeholders with opportunities to share best practices and to share tools being developed to address human trafficking. The health, labour, public safety, immigration, justice and law enforcement sectors are represented on these calls.

Building on the momentum established with the National Forum on Human Trafficking (National Forum) hosted in January 2014, PS hosted a Human Trafficking National Stakeholder Workshop on March 26-27, 2015, in Ottawa, Ontario. The workshop included key stakeholder, members of the Human Trafficking Taskforce and federal departments and agencies. The purpose of the workshop was to take stock of, prioritize and advance activities identified in the National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking (NAP), while also identifying emerging issues and opportunities. In addition, it helped support and enhance the connections between stakeholders and policy makers to ensure that the NAP is addressing everyone's needs.

The workshop offered an opportunity for information sharing, updates on progress since the last national consultation in January 2014, discussion and identification of emerging issues, and the identification of potential solutions and opportunities. Discussions included an examination of the recommendations of the “No More, Ending Sex-Trafficking In Canada” report of the National Task Force on Sex Trafficking of Women and Girls in Canada (specifically Chapter 8: Collective Action) sponsored by the Canadian Women's Foundation and a determination of next steps for implementation and action.

To support information sharing with provinces and territories, ESDC (TFWP) is negotiating and/or updating agreements with all provinces and territories, as well as with federal government departments and agencies.

The CBSA monitors travel history through the Integrated Customs Enforcement System, which includes passport usage for entry into Canada. This information can be shared with law enforcement partners while respecting information sharing regulations under the Customs Act, Privacy Act and the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. The CBSA is in regular contact with IRCC-Passport Program regarding a variety of issues, including human trafficking and is often solicited by IRCC-Passport Program for information. In return, the CBSA receives valuable information that may be used in its intelligence reports.

In 2014-2015, Canada participated in a number of multi-lateral fora to support global anti-trafficking efforts and promote its domestic achievements abroad, including:

Global Plan of Action to Combat Trafficking in Persons;

ESDC (TFWP) continued to liaise with source countries for temporary workers to support awareness-raising of labour and sexual exploitation, to share best practices and to enhance protections for temporary foreign workers. For example, in 2014-2015 include ESDC worked closely with Mexico and Caribbean countries to manage worker protection issues in the Seasonal Agriculture Worker Program. ESDC (TFWP) continues to support awareness-raising of labour and sexual exploitation.

In terms of efforts to partner with international organizations and foreign governments, in 2014-2015, GAC continued to support efforts to combat human trafficking in Latin America, Southeast Asia and East Africa, and joined the Together for Girls Partnership with a grant to UNICEF for $5 million over two years.  Together for Girls is a global public-private partnership dedicated to ending violence against children, with a focus on sexual violence against girls.  The partnership includes five UN agencies, the governments of the United States and Canada, several private sector organizations and more than fifteen implementing country governments in Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.

Key GAC Partnerships:

With respect to enhanced data collection, the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics at Statistics Canada has revised the 2014 cycle of the Transition Home Survey to include the category 'human trafficking' under the question 'reasons for seeking shelter', which will capture data on the number of female residents that were in a shelter for reasons of human trafficking (on a particular snapshot day). This addition further enhances human trafficking data collection and available statistics.

The above highlights some of the partnership and knowledge development activities undertaken by the Government of Canada in 2014-2015 to support efforts to address human trafficking.

Moving Forward

Moving forward, the Government of Canada will use the findings and recommendations from stakeholder consultations to-date and ongoing engagement with a variety of partners, to inform the development of future anti-human trafficking priorities that fall under federal jurisdiction, including those identified under the National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking.The Government is considering examining key actions identified by stakeholders in moving the Plan forward in 2015-2016.  These could include: increased focus and collaboration on labour trafficking; the continued exploration of opportunities to enhance federal procurement policy to ensure that it does not support human trafficking in any way/form; updates to information and awareness materials for those coming to Canada to work temporarily and improving protections for them; increased advocacy by Canadian missions abroad; and exploring collaboration opportunities with our North American partners, the United States and Mexico.

These are in addition to numerous ongoing federal activities to combat human trafficking.

Conclusion

The Government of Canada will continue to build upon its responses and look for ways to prevent human trafficking through effective and targeted awareness and intervention, to protect and meet the needs of victims and to prosecute offenders. Further progress, however, requires cooperative efforts and information sharing among all levels of government, law enforcement, NGOs and the full range of stakeholders. The government looks forward to continued collaboration with the vast array of experts and stakeholders at home and abroad engaged in combating this crime.

ANNEX A
Action Items Chart

PREVENTION

Objective 1.1: The Government of Canada will support a broad-based prevention strategy focusing on awareness-raising and research activities to prevent human trafficking.

Task

Deliverable

Timeline

Status

Lead

1.11 Support and develop human trafficking information and awareness campaigns.

Promote online training tool launched by the BC Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

PS,
JUS

Develop an RCMP Youth Strategy, which will explore various outreach initiatives among young people.

Start:
2015/16

Ongoing

RCMP

Continue to disseminate awareness materials at Canadian Embassies and High Commissions abroad as well as to stakeholders, foreign workers, provinces and territories, and employers.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC,
CBSA,
ESDC (TFWP)

Provide links to other government department websites, immigration programs and human trafficking awareness materials on GAC and Embassy websites.

Start: 2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Make information available to anyone with a work permit, such as Temporary Foreign Workers and international students, indicating where they can seek assistance on issues related to employment and health and safety.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC,

Provide information on the temporary resident permit (TRP) to foreign national victims of human trafficking as well as information of the employment rights of temporary foreign workers on the IRCC website.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

Incorporate human trafficking training for overseas immigration officers.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

NEW: Create Advocacy tool kit and campaign for use by Canadian Embassies and High Commissions abroad

Start 2014/15

Ongoing

ESDC
(TFWP)

NEW: Conduct data analysis to identify trends and inform policy.

Start: 2014/2015

Ongoing

ESDC
(TFWP)

1.12 Enhance awareness of Government anti-human trafficking efforts.

Provide up-to-date information on Government anti-human trafficking efforts (e.g., periodic reports, legislative updates, resources, news and events) online:

  • Develop and launch 'Canada's National Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter' ;
  • RCMP to contribute to PS 'Fast Facts' as appropriate

Start:
2012/13

2012/13

2015/16

Ongoing

Ongoing

Ongoing

PS,
RCMP,
(in collaboration with the HTT

Provide information on human trafficking on RCMP website (e.g., number of cases, number of charges, and number of convictions).

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Liaise with other departments in the development of integrated web content that highlights human trafficking achievements and awareness materials and promotes linkages.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

CBSA

1.13 Prevent Human Trafficking and reduce vulnerabilities abroad.

Through the Children and Youth Strategy, GAC will combat human trafficking in developing countries by:

  • Encouraging partners to review and design programs to consider unsafe migration and human trafficking;
  • Ensuring GAC supported programs and projects consider community-based, and other protection mechanisms for young women and children;
  • Encouraging partners to integrate into curriculum design life skills training programs that tackle safe migration and human trafficking scenarios;
  • Ensuring birth registration is included and promoted in bilateral partner's frameworks and throughout programming;
  • Targeting GAC programming to women and girls living in poverty, to address the underlying cause of entry into human trafficking circumstances.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

PROTECTION AND ASSISTANCE FOR VICTIMS

Objective 2.1: The Government of Canada will continue to assist all victims of crime, including trafficking victims; to work with the provinces and territories to deliver services responsive to the needs of trafficking victims; and to promote greater understanding of the needs of trafficked persons with a view to promoting their physical, psychological and social recovery.

Task

Deliverable

Timeline

Status

Lead

2.11 Collaborate with civil society and provinces and territories to develop resources and provide training for frontline service providers on responding to the needs of trafficked persons, and to promote a consistent response across Canada.

Provide information on the victim's state of mind and effects of trauma to criminal justice officials at human trafficking training and awareness sessions.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Explore, through the FPT Victims of Crime Working Group, the development of guidelines/basic principles regarding the treatment of/services to victims of human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

In progress

JUS

2.12 Provide funding to support provinces and territories and community organizations in improving services for victims of crime, including victims of human trafficking.

The Victims Fund currently makes funding available to projects that improve services to victims of human trafficking and will, beginning in 2013/14, have up to $500,000 specifically designated to such projects.

Start:
2013/14

Ongoing

JUS

Provide funding, where possible, to projects, including support to female victims of human trafficking, preventative measures such as community safety plans, and collaboration with service providers and law enforcement to better identify cases of suspected human trafficking and individuals at risk of being trafficked.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

SWC
INAC

2.13 Protect foreign nationals vulnerable to human trafficking, including female immigrants aged 15-21 years.

IRCC will improve monitoring and enforcement in the international student program.

Start:
2012/13

In progress

IRCC

Work with provincial/territorial partners to ensure that foreign nationals entering Canada under the International Student Program are genuine and attending quality educational institutions throughout the period of their stay.

Start:
2012/13

In progress

IRCC

Provide TRPs to foreign national victims of human trafficking.  In deciding whether to impose or lift visa requirements, IRCC will consider, among other factors, whether a country has been a significant source country for human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

NEW: Launch an awareness campaign aimed strengthening partnerships and coordination between IRCC, CBSA, RCMP and external partners as well as supporting officers in the field by providing them with tools, resources and training materials such as modernized program delivery instructions for the issuance of Temporary Residence Permits (TRPs) and clarified procedures for victims of human trafficking.

Start:
2014/15

Ongoing

IRCC

NEW: Explore options to enhance protections for vulnerable workers (e.g. live-in caregivers, agriculture workers, SAWP and low-wage workers).

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC,
ESDC (TFWP)

Refer to and work with the Federal Witness Protection Program, as required, when a foreign national victim/witness of human trafficking is deemed eligible under the terms of the program.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

2.14 Protect Canadians vulnerable to trafficking.

Issue emergency travel documents to Canadian citizens who are victims of human trafficking abroad for repatriation in a timelier manner.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

Refer to and work with the Federal Witness Protection Program, as required, when a Canadian victim/witness of human trafficking is deemed eligible under the terms of the program.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

DETECTION, INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION OF TRAFFICKERS

Objective 3.1: The Government of Canada will build on current efforts to bring traffickers to justice and to strengthen the criminal justice system's responses to this crime.

Task

Deliverable

Timeline

Status

Lead

3.11 Provide targeted human trafficking training and education for criminal justice officials.

Provide regular briefings on human trafficking detection methods and best practices to all CBSA staff with human trafficking related functions along the continuum and assist in providing the necessary tools to better equip officers to identify and intercept victims as well as traffickers.  This includes the provision of ongoing training and the development of online training which will facilitate delivery.

Update of EN manual Chapter 15, Trafficking in Persons.

Human Trafficking – Nature and Extent of Activity in Border Five Countries led by the CBSA

Start:
2011/12

2012/13

2013/14

Ongoing

In progress

Completed (September 2014)

CBSA

Explore opportunities to work with the Judiciary, including the National Justice Institute to promote education on human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

In progress

JUS

In collaboration with JUS and several stakeholders, develop education and training including: an advanced course on human trafficking at the Canadian Police College (CPC), human trafficking awareness session for RCMP cadets, an online human trafficking course for law enforcement, and incorporate human trafficking training into CPC and Pacific Region Training Centre courses indirectly related to human trafficking (i.e., Organized Crime, intelligence, and the Aboriginal Gang Reduction Strategies course).

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Distribute the 'I'm Not for Sale' law enforcement toolkit which provides useful operational information for police investigating trafficking cases, victim assistance guidelines as well as information.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

3.12 Explore options to raise awareness of human trafficking for forced labour with labour inspectors, officials and TFWP/Service Canada officers.

NEW: Continue to monitor new Tip Line and Online Fraud Reporting Tool to identify improvements,

Start:
2014/15

Ongoing

ESDC (Labour Program),
RCMP

Develop training modules for the TFWP/Service Canada officers and human trafficking outreach material for employers and third parties.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

ESDC (TFWP)

3.13 Enhance intelligence, coordination and collaboration.

Coordinate intelligence on human trafficking and enhance the production, on an ongoing basis, of threat assessments/intelligence briefs on domestic and international human trafficking within a Canadian context.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Maintain partnerships among law enforcement at the municipal, national and international level to improve information and intelligence sharing within the law enforcement community.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

When appropriate, conduct parallel Proceeds of Crime Investigations when conducting human trafficking investigations.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Increase collaboration with law enforcement to revoke the passport or other travel documents of a Canadian trafficker who is charged (inside or outside Canada) with what constitutes an indictable offence and to impose a period of refusal of passport service.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

Collect, analyze, produce, disseminate intelligence materials related to human trafficking and share with relevant internal and external stakeholders involved in preventing human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

CBSA

Develop and disseminate information with respect to human trafficking trends to stakeholders, consular staff and visa officers on a regular basis.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

CBSA

Engage IRCC's Passport Program's Intelligence Division to collect and analyze data related to human trafficking and where there are indicators that a situation may trigger the revocation or refusal process, forward the file to the Investigations Division.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC ,
CBSA

Increase collaboration with law enforcement in order to include on IRCC Passport program's System Lookout individuals who are under investigation or who have been charged with criminal offences in regards to human trafficking and when possible, share information to confirm suspect's identity and assist in the prosecution.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

Promote bilateral cooperation through Mutual Legal Assistance and extradition treaties.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC
JUS

Provide designated information to partners relevant to investigations or prosecutions of suspected money laundering activity related to human trafficking and monitor and assess financial transactions to identify trends and patterns specific to the laundering of illicit proceeds related to human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

FINTRAC

Participate in INTERPOL Taskforce on human trafficking to exchange intelligence, awareness and best practices among the international law enforcement community.

Start:
2011/12

Ongoing

RCMP

3.14 Support Investigations and Prosecutions.

Develop and make widely available materials to assist front-line criminal justice personnel in the investigation and prosecution of human trafficking in Canada (e.g., issue fact sheets).

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

JUS

Develop and train police subject matter experts on human trafficking to present expert testimony in court with the objective of convicting traffickers.

Start:
2011/12

On hold

RCMP

Provide expertise to police of jurisdiction on human trafficking investigations.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

3.15 Ensure that strategies are in place to assess for human trafficking as part of large scale irregular arrivals.

When it is believed that a Canadian travel document was misused, use IRCC Passport Program's database of photographs to identify individuals or detect/identify fraud and/or imposters.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC,
RCMP

Employ an operation contingency plan to investigate and assess Criminal Code of Canada and IRPA offences, including human trafficking, amongst persons who come to Canada as part of large-scale irregular arrivals.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

CBSA,IRCC

3.16 Enhance protocols and information technology (IT) systems to improve detection of labour exploitation, including human trafficking.

NEW: enhance policy governing information collection and its analysis.

Start:
2014/15

Ongoing

ESDC (TFWP)

NEW: Explore developing predictive analytic models to identify trends and risk factors.

Start:
2014/2015

Ongoing

ESDC
(Service Canada)

PARTNERSHIP AND KNOWLEDGE (DOMESTIC AND INTERNATIONAL)

Objective 4.1: The Government of Canada will strengthen its relationships with relevant stakeholders to facilitate the ongoing development of effective policies and tools, to ensure a comprehensive and coordinated approach; and work to improve its ability to collect, track and report on data related to human trafficking in order to enhance knowledge and adapt our response appropriately, both domestically and on the international stage.

Task

Deliverable

Timeline

Status

Lead

4.11 Enhance engagement and collaboration with civil society and all levels of government to support knowledge exchange, strengthen partnerships and inform policy responses.

Hold regular discussions with civil society and provinces and territories to share information on combatting human trafficking, including inviting these stakeholders to present and discuss current issues on an ad hoc basis.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

PS (in consult with HTT)

Provide awareness sessions to civil society to enhance the understanding of human trafficking, strengthen relationships and possibly identify and assist victims.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP

Promote the Contribution Program to Combat Serious and Organized Crime (formerly the Contribution Program to Combat Child Sexual Exploitation and Human Trafficking) to strengthen and engage partnerships with civil society and provinces and territories.

Start:
2011/12

Ongoing

PS

ESDC will negotiate new and amended Information Sharing Agreements with federal government partners (IRCC, CBSA & Canada Revenue Agency) and with provinces/territories (P/Ts) to enhance the administration and enforcement of the TFWP, including the identification of employers who are non-compliant with federal or provincial laws that regulate employment.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

ESDC (TFWP)
IRCC (IMP)

NEW: Explore methods to increase data and information sharing among departments and partners to inform data-driven approaches to identify risks and trends related to human trafficking activities.

Start:
2014/2015

Ongoing

ESDC
(Service Canada)

Enhance information sharing across federal departments on domestic and international issues related to human trafficking and forced labour.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

ESDC (Labour Program)

4.12 Increase public diplomacy efforts and exchange of reporting between Canadian Government Departments and Canadian Embassies based in source countries.

Request regular human trafficking reporting, research and analysis by Canadian Missions through outreach to foreign experts in source and transit countries.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Monitor and share data on the use of Canadian passports/travel documents through partnership networks of law enforcement and border control agencies at the domestic and international level to prevent human traffickers from travelling.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC,
CBSA

4.13 Systematically report on official data through existing data collection systems and disseminate publically on an annual basis.

Publish details of non-compliant employers on public website.

Start:
2013/14

Ongoing

ESDC (TFWP)
IRCC(IMP)

Provide aggregated data on requests regarding specifics to offenders and victims of human trafficking to further the understanding of the crime.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

StatsCan

Regularly release disaggregated data pertaining to Temporary Resident Permits issues to foreign national victims of human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

IRCC

4.14 Partner with international organizations and foreign governments to increase capacity to prevent and combat human trafficking.

Through the Anti-Crime Capacity Building Programme (ACCBP) support projects to build capacity in key source and transit countries to combat human trafficking.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Build capacity of law enforcement in developing countries to protect children and youth, especially girls, from violence, exploitation and abuse, and to combat human trafficking.

Start:
2011/12

Ongoing

GAC (Development)

Promote the ACCBP and the Global Peace and Security Fund (GPSF) to international organizations, NGOs, and partner countries in order to support projects in source and transit countries that combat human trafficking with a focus on organized crime networks.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Promote Canada's domestic achievements and share best practices on combating human trafficking through participation in international fora and with multi-lateral organizations (i.e., UN, OAS, ASEAN, IOM, ILO) and sub-regional mechanisms such as the Regional Conference on Migration (RCM).

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC and others,
IRCC

Where possible, make human trafficking (and migrant smuggling) an area of discussion during bilateral interactions between Canada and source and transit countries – particularly in the Americas.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Use diplomatic protocols to promote regional and international partnerships, policies and capacity building to combat human trafficking and child exploitation.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

GAC

Liaise with source countries (of potentially vulnerable temporary foreign workers employed as in-home caregivers, primary agriculture workers and seasonal agricultural workers to increase awareness of resources available to foreign workers and enhance protections for vulnerable workers.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

ESDC (TFWP)

Leveraging international resources, such as Liaison Officers, the CBSA will work with like-minded international organizations to address human trafficking issues, and where resources permit and as deemed appropriate by senior officials, contribute to broader Government of Canada confidence building measures that aim to counter human trafficking activities.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

CBSA

Engage subject matter experts in capacity building initiatives.

Start:
2012/13

Ongoing

RCMP,
CBSA,
JUS

Include emphasis on human trafficking within the delivery of Canada's Action Plan to implement UN Security Council resolution 1325 on Women, Peace and Security, which together calls for special consideration, during and after conflict, to the differential impact of conflict on women and girls and calls states to ensure that the rights and well-being of women and girls are integrated into peace processes and other responses to armed conflict.

Start:
2011/12

In progress

GAC
PS,
RCMP,
JUS

Annex B: Resources and Links

Canadian Legislation (CCC and IRPA Human Trafficking Offences)

Government of Canada Human Trafficking Website

National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking (2012)

National Action Plan to Combat Human Trafficking: 2012-2013 Annual Report on Progress

National Summary Report: 2012-2013 Human Trafficking Stakeholder Consultations

Local Safety Audit Guide: To Prevent Trafficking in Persons and Related Exploitation

Canada's Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter

RCMP 'I'm Not for Sale' Campaign

RCMP 'I'm Not for Sale' Youth Campaign

Human Trafficking in Canada: A Threat Assessment (2010)

Project SAFEKEEPING: Domestic Human Trafficking for Sexual Exploitation in Canada (2013)

Introduction to Human Trafficking Online Training Course for Law Enforcement and Prosecutors
Available via: www.cpkn.ca

'Temporary Foreign Workers: Your Rights are Protected' pamphlet (multiple languages)

Welcome to Canada Guide

'Human Trafficking: Canada is Not Immune' online training program

PACT Ottawa – TruckSTOP campaign


Endnotes

  1. 1

    The first human trafficking cases for forced labour where convictions were secured involved mostly men who were recruited from their native Hungary to work for a construction business. They were promised steady work, good pay and a better life but once in Canada, the victims were mistreated: working long hours without pay, fed very little food, kept under tight control, and threatened with harm to their families if they did not comply. Activities in Canada included human trafficking and welfare fraud.

  2. 2

    To request a copy of 'Project SAFEKEEPING' please contact the RCMP HTNCC at htncc-cnctp@rcmp-grc.gc.ca or 1-855-850-4640.

  3. 3

    Membership consists of PS, CBSA, RCMP, IRCC, INAC, GAC, SWC, JUS, ESDC (TFWP), and ESDC (Labour Program).  Additional departments participate on an ad hoc basis (e.g., DND, FINTRAC, PPTC, PHAC, PPSC, Stats Can).

  4. 4

    A full compendium of Government of Canada efforts and progress to date can be found in Annex A.

  5. 5

    To view the four PSAs, please go to: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC0xFtnOnq3cWXqNFebhjLYQ.

  6. 6

    To request a copy of 'Project SafeKEEPING' please contact the RCMP HTNCC at htncc-cnctp@rcmp-grc.gc.ca or 1-855-850-4640.

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