Barbados looking to attain higher ranking
Sun, 07/03/2016 - 12:00am
While Barbados remains at a tier two ranking in the latest Trafficking in Persons Report released in Washington D.C. earlier this week, Attorney General
and Minister of Home Affairs, Adriel Brathwaite says concerted efforts are being made to get the country to tier one, the highest level.
Speaking to the media recently, he said while he has not yet seen the official report, he is aware of the designation given to Barbados by the United States Department
of State. He acknowledged that while it would be the third successive year the country was at that level, it did not diminish the work being done within the country to ensure that Barbados meets the international best practices, even if only to the minimum standards.
“Let me thank the US authorities for working with us to identify areas where there were perceived weaknesses and where we’ve had some additional work to do, which we’ve done. As you know, we amended our legislation earlier this year, [but] there is some element of training that we still need to address,” he said.
With that in mind, he stated that the national plan of action is still to be completed and the committee tasked with addressing these issues locally is hard at work to ensure that come next year the country would be able to reach the tier one designation.
“But this is not about tier one, or tier two, or tier three, it is about ensuring that where possible, that if there are victims identified within our shores, that we can provide them with
the level of support that is required; is ensuring that we train as many people as possible within our shores to be able to identify victims of trafficking,” he said.
To that end, he indicated that a few weeks ago they conducted training sessions with the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association, as they recognise that there are certain sectors that require additional training. This, he pointed out, will be an ongoing exercise. Moreover, he added that they will be going into the communities through community
centres and churches, for example, to facilitate the delivery of that training.
“So whilst I am satisfied where we are, I recognise that there are some weaknesses that we can do better and we are going to address them,” he stated.