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Luxembourg demonstrates its commitment to end modern slavery

May 5, 2021

Luxembourg becomes the 51th country to ratify the ILO Forced Labour Protocol.

Photo : Mullerthal, Luxembourg (© Bart van Schöll)

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By ratifying the ILO Protocol on Forced Labour, Luxembourg has committed to take effective measures to prevent forced labour, protect victims and ensure their access to justice, including compensation.

“The Luxembourgish Government is convinced that more efforts are necessary in order to counteract phenomena such as forced labour under all its forms. We will continue to strengthen all national actors that are involved in this fight. On an international level it is very satisfying to see that the important goal of the “50 for freedom” campaign has already been reached as by now 51 countries have already ratified the ILO Protocol on Forced Labour. This clearly shows that these 51 countries are strongly committed to cooperate and to make a common effort in order to eliminate forced labour”, said Luxembourg’s Vice Prime minister and minister of Labour, Employment and the Social and Solidarity Economy, Dan Kersch.

Luxembourg has a consolidated legal framework to prevent, repress and punish trafficking in persons, as well as to reinforce the protection of the victim. These include the 2008 Act on the Free Movement of Persons and Immigration; the 2009 Act relating to the trafficking of human beings; and the 2009 Act on assistance, protection and security of victims of trafficking in human beings. The latter envisages the establishment of a committee to monitor action to combat trafficking in humans, bearing the responsibility, among other matters, for coordinating preventive activities, assessing the phenomenon of trafficking and centralizing and analysing the statistical data on the issue.

“Luxembourg’s ratification, just after we celebrated the first 50 ratifications of the Protocol, is very encouraging. All countries must follow suit and ratify this instrument. Adopting and enforcing relevant legislation, providing assistance to victims and ensuring that they can claim their rights in a court of justice, are concrete measures provided in the Protocol, that can change the lives of the millions of women, men and children tricked and trapped in forced labour. This crime happens in every country and should not be tolerated”, affirms Lieve Verboven, director of the ILO office for the European Union and the Benelux countries.

With Luxembourg’s ratification of the Forced Labour Protocol, a total of 51 countries worldwide have now committed to this international treaty since it was adopted at the International Labour Conference in 2014. In November 2017, during the Global Conference on child labour and forced labour in Argentina, the European Union pledged to “promote actively swift ratification of the Forced Labour Protocol among EU members”. With the ratification of Luxembourg this year, and of Lithuania and Portugal last year, only eight European Union countries are still to ratify the Protocol.