Trafficking of Men

At Home: Family Reintegration of Trafficked Indonesian Men (2018)

Large numbers of Indonesian men migrate each year for work in construction, in factories and in agriculture, on plantations and on fishing boats. Many of them end up exploited in ways that constitute human trafficking, suffering violence, deprivation, restricted freedom and severe exploitation as well as long periods of separation from their families. This article explores the challenges faced by forty-nine Indonesian men reintegrating into their families and communities after having been trafficked. While many problems with the family were caused by economics, tensions also resulted from long separations, fractured relationships, and frustration and blame over ‘failed’ migration and unfulfilled expectations. Tensions were sometimes exacerbated when men faced recrimination and blame in their communities after return. Understanding the nature of and reasons for the problems that men faced after trafficking is vital in considering how trafficked men and their families can be supported to recover and reintegrate after trafficking.


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In African waters. The trafficking of Cambodian fishers in South Africa (2014)


Executive Summary (available in Khmer)

This study discusses the trafficking of men in the fishing industry. It focuses on Cambodian men severely exploited in South African waters. Through extensive interviews, NEXUS reveals the stories of how the men were recruited and transported as well as their trafficking experiences at sea. The study also discusses how these trafficked fishers were (or, more commonly, were not) identified as trafficking victims and what assistance they did (or did not) receive when they escaped and returned home to Cambodia and sought to reintegrate into their families and communities.


Global Human TraffickingAt sea. The trafficking of seafarers and fishers from Ukraine. In Global human trafficking. Critical issues and contexts (2014)

This book chapter explores the issue of trafficking at sea. In this chapter, NEXUS shares the experiences of forty-six trafficked Ukrainian seafarers and fishers. It describes how Ukrainian men were recruited, transported and severely exploited, as well as their experiences of escape from trafficking and their subsequent reintegration into their families and societies. In considering limitations in the identification of and assistance to the trafficked Ukrainian seafarers/fishers, the chapter outlines key challenges in the protection of trafficked seafarers and fishers and intervention needs and opportunities in combating trafficking at sea. While highlighting the specific and unique aspects of the Ukrainian experience, the chapter will also be of interest to those considering forced labor on board seagoing vessels more generally that is occurring around the world


Screen Shot 2015-02-15 at 4.27.59 PMTrapped at Sea. Using the Legal and Regulatory Framework to Prevent and Combat the Trafficking of Seafarers and Fishers (2013)

In this article, NEXUS frames what constitutes trafficking at sea, both in the commercial fishing sector and in the merchant fleet and presents the legal and regulatory framework to combat trafficking at sea – namely, international anti-trafficking law, international maritime law and the international law of the sea. The article considers the “three P paradigm” of anti-trafficking (that is, prevention, protection and prosecution) and how improved policies, regulation, legislation and enforcement have the potential to contribute to an improved situation for seafarers and fishers—to both prevent and combat trafficking in commercial fishing and the merchant fleet.


After TraffickingAfter trafficking. Experiences and challenges in the (re)integration of trafficked persons in the GMS (2013)

Summary Report (available in Burmese, Chinese, KhmerLaotian, Vietnamese and Thai)

Reintegration is a process that involves many steps after the individual’s exit from trafficking. Trafficked persons should be afforded the full range of rights and protections they are entitled to and which are guaranteed under law. While many trafficked persons interviewed for this study were assisted and supported in these ways; many others went unidentified and unassisted as trafficking victims, which meant not receiving support to aid in their recovery and sustainable reintegration. Still others received some forms of assistance but not the full range of services that they required (and were entitled to) to move on from trafficking experience and successfully reintegrate. Some trafficked persons chose to decline some or all of the support offered to them. This research aims to understand the individual and diverse reintegration experiences of trafficked persons – what was positive, what was less successful and what might be done in the future to either replicate good practices or avoid problematic ones.


UntitledTrafficked at sea. The exploitation of Ukrainian seafarers and fishers (2012)


Trafficking for forced labor, including trafficking for labor in the merchant shipping and fishing industries, has been increasingly recognized as a major form of human trafficking. Reported cases signal that there are aspects of the commercial fishing and seafaring sectors which may lend themselves particularly to trafficking abuses. This paper explores and discusses the experiences of trafficked Ukrainian seafarers and fishers in order that anti-trafficking policies and programs can take into account their experiences and needs. While the stories of these trafficked Ukrainian seafarers and fishers highlight some unique experiences, many of the issues raised in this report have wider application to incidences of trafficking at sea around the world.


Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 7.01.35 PM(Re)integration: Perspectives of Victim Service Agencies on Successes & Challenges in Trafficking Victim (Re)Integration in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region (2012)

Available in Chinese, Burmese, Thai, Khmer, Laotian and Vietnamese

Throughout 2010, victim service practitioners and other anti-trafficking responders providing support to victims of human trafficking gathered in a series of National Practitioner Forums in each of the GMS countries (Cambodia, China, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam) to discuss existing reintegration assistance systems, lessons learned, successes and challenges. This document summarizes the key findings of these national practitioner forums, drawing out key themes, lessons learned, and common challenges facing victim service agencies in the process of reintegrating trafficked persons. The perspectives contained within this publication are the voices, ideas, feedback, lessons and concerns of the victim service agencies and other anti-trafficking practitioners across the GMS.


Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 9.33.18 PMTrafficking in Men, a Trend Less Considered: The Case of Belarus and Ukraine (2008)

Men are often overlooked in discussions of human trafficking and those who are targeted by trafficking enterprises. Reflecting this bias, trafficking in males has been under-considered in research. This despite noteworthy signals that many males, adult and minors, are subjected to trafficking exploitation. Often these severely exploited male victims, especially in the context of migration, are overlooked, with women and girls identified more commonly as victims of trafficking. This deficiency in identifying and assisting males who have been victims of trafficking exploitation needs to be addressed. “Trafficking in persons” must be understood and addressed as affecting all victims: women and men, adults and minors. In Belarus and Ukraine, male victims accounted for 28.3 per cent and 17.6 per cent of the IOM-assisted caseload respectively between 2004 and 2006. Through the lens of trafficking in males (primarily adult men) from Belarus and Ukraine, this study considers male victims’ pre-trafficking life (namely their personal, family and socio-economic background), trafficking experience (from recruitment, through transportation and during exploitation) and post trafficking experience and needs. The report examines, on the one hand, what is known about this less-considered profile of trafficked persons and, on the other hand, what can be done to meet their needs, both as a means of assistance and protection. The study draws on primary data collected about 685 trafficked males assisted by IOM and its partners, through IOM’s Counter-Trafficking Module Database in Geneva as well as qualitative information from interviews with and case files of assisted men. The research findings should not be read as representative of the full scope of trafficking in either country; they are instead representative of trafficked males who have been identified and received assistance and not male trafficking victims generally.


Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 9.34.11 PMTrafficked Men as Unwilling Victims (2008)

Many victims of human trafficking are reluctant to self-identify. This research discusses how this can be especially true for men who have been victims of trafficking. And the failure to self-identify exacerbates the shortcomings in current institutionalized responses that are more likely to discover and identify trafficking cases involving females than males. Trafficking in human beings is most commonly associated with trafficking of women or children, especially, for sexual exploitation. Most studies and projects, following this bias, also focus primarily, if not exclusively, on trafficking in women and children. Far less common is a consideration of trafficking in males, particularly adult men. Studies on trafficking of men and targeted anti-trafficking interventions are few and far between. Nevertheless, there are signals in many countries and regions that male migrants are also exploited and violated in ways that constitute human trafficking. This reality raises serious questions about the reason for a focus on women (and children) as well as the implications for practitioners, policymakers and, most importantly, trafficked men.


Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 9.36.25 PMLabour Trafficking in SE Europe: Developing Prevention & Assistance Programmes (2007)

This paper discusses labor trafficking in South Eastern Europe (SEE). It presents cases of women, men and children exploited for labor purposes and considers their specific recruitment and trafficking experiences. It is intended as a first step in understanding who has been trafficked for labor from and within this region and what are the various risk factors. The paper also considers how counter- trafficking programs can be more responsive and effective


Screen Shot 2015-03-05 at 10.01.30 PMListening to victims: Experiences of Identification, Return and Assistance in SEE (2007)

The voices of victims of trafficking and their stories are powerful. While a number of studies and documents have examined the identification, return and assistance process for trafficked persons, the focus has been primarily on the legal and administrative frameworks in which identification, return and assistance take place. The structure of these standard reports include principles and guidelines in the identification and assistance process, the legislative framework and studies of the assistance framework, including good practices. Far less common have been studies of how victims themselves have perceived and experienced their post-trafficking life and how they value and evaluate this intervention and assistance. This report maps — from the victim’s perspective — the full trajectory of intervention by anti-trafficking actors — from identification, through return and referral and during various phases of assistance and protection. While anti-trafficking interventions are clearly vital in the recovery of trafficked persons, victims reported both positive and negative experiences in these various stages of anti-trafficking interventions. This information from the individuals who are the intended beneficiaries of these interventions is vital for on-going efforts in transnational referral and assistance systems for trafficked persons. The study is based on interviews with 80 trafficked women and men, children and adults from Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Moldova, Romania and Serbia.