The challenges associated with identifying victims of human trafficking


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Davis, Matthew James (2020). The challenges associated with identifying victims of human trafficking. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Human Trafficking is not only a global crime but also in the UK as a result of the Human Rights Act 1998, human trafficking is considered as a human rights violation. Within the different stages of recruitment and exploitation, various rights are violated. These include rights to freedom of movement, liberty and association. In many cases, the right not to be subjected to torture and/or cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment are violated. Trafficking involves millions of vulnerable people affected by war and displacement, climate change and extreme poverty. It is often difficult for trafficked victims to be identified and for victims to self-identify and for victims to be distinguishable from other groups of vulnerable people such as economic migrants, asylum seekers, refugees and smuggled persons.

The increased identification of victims present greater opportunities for trafficked individuals to escape exploitation, and to access essential support to help them recover from their ordeal. This research examines the environments where difficulties of identifying foreign victims exist, or overlook the issue of identification entirely.

This research argues that a victim centred approach is required to instil confidence in the referral and identification process in the UK. Where more foreign victims are identified as victims, they will not be misidentified as other types of migrant, not prosecuted for offences committed under duress, or deported where they could run the risk of being re-trafficked. The purpose of this research is to contribute to existing work academics have done, to help antitrafficking organisations, charities, public authorities and staff within the UK’s National Referral Mechanism play a pivotal role in referring and identifying more foreign trafficked victims, despite the current negativity surrounding immigration.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: Birmingham Law School
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)


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