Israel determined to combat modern slavery
November 27, 2018
27th country to ratify the Protocol, the government of Israel has expressed its willingness to act jointly with the global community “to end modern slavery in all its ugly forms”.
“Israel is very proud to have recently ratified the ILO Protocol to the Convention on Forced Labour from 2014, as part of our continuous and deep commitment to the international efforts to combat and eradicate all forms of modern slavery, including forced labour”, says Dina Dominitz, Israel’s National anti-trafficking coordinator, Ministry of Justice. “We believe that preventing forced labour is part of the core values of protecting human rights and human dignity; and that the Protocol sets forth new tools that can complement and strengthen existing practices and afford new strategies to address the challenges of the elimination of all forms of forced labour.
In particular, Israel has put a lot of efforts in combatting trafficking in women for the purpose of sexual exploitation, which was prevalent during the previous decade and went through a dramatic decrease. Identified victims can benefit from housing, psychological, legal and rehabilitation services in secured shelters. Besides, Israel provides training and promotes international cooperation. “We appreciate that the Protocol focuses on the protection of victims, providing them with access to remedies and includes also an emphasis on prevention through new measures; such as education and awareness raising in employers and workers organization, while also ensuring victim’s rights are respected and perpetrators more effectively punished”, adds Dina Dominitz.
The 2006 Anti-Trafficking Law includes an offence of holding a person under conditions of slavery (Section 375A of the Israeli Penal code). Prosecution and access to justice was the main topics of a recent seminar for judges, organised by Israel in October 2018, gathering participants from 22 countries, as well as the UNODC, the OSCE and the ILO. The aim was to discuss operational challenges for judges regarding prosecution of trafficking offences as well as creating a network of judges to promote cooperation and exchange of information.
“The ratification of the ILO Protocol is a natural step for us and we strive to continue joining together with the global community to end modern slavery in all its ugly forms” concludes Dina Dominitz.