Oct 5, 2018
The United Nations Action for Cooperation against Trafficking in Persons (UN-ACT) is a regional UNDP project supporting a more strategic and coordinated response against human trafficking in the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS: Cambodia, China, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam) and beyond. UN-ACT staff also serve as focal points in the Asia-Pacific region for UNDP’s evolving portfolio on migration and displacement.
A key component of UN-ACT’s work is to provide technical, coordination and financial support to the Coordinated Mekong Ministerial Initiative Against Trafficking (COMMIT), an intergovernmental body that brings together the six countries in the GMS in a joint effort to counter trafficking in persons. UN-ACT is building national capacities for a more sustainable COMMIT, with related functions being gradually integrated into the countries’ own systems and procedures.
Highlights from 2017:
- The GMS governments developed and adopted standardized M&E frameworks to report on progress in their implementation of the 4th COMMIT Sub-regional Plan of Action. They also introduced an annual COMMIT Chair, working alongside UN-ACT in moving the COMMIT agenda forward.
- COMMIT’s regional priority in 2017 was to strengthen recruitment policies and practices in their labour migration systems. The governments' agreed on using the ILO’s ‘General Principles and Operational Guidelines on Fair Recruitment’ as a reference for the development of bilateral agreements between GMS countries.
- UN-ACT published ‘Supporting the Reintegration of Trafficked Persons: A Guidebook for the Greater Mekong Sub-region’, based on findings from UN-ACT’s study, ‘After Trafficking: Experiences and Challenges in the (Re)Integration of Trafficked Persons in the Greater Mekong Sub-Region’.
- In collaboration with Mahidol University, Thailand, UN-ACT organized the ‘International Seminar on Mixed Migration in Southeast and East Asia’, to help strengthen research and teaching related to different manifestations of migration in the region.
- 813 out of the 1,817 trafficked persons supported through COMMIT’s (trans-)national referral mechanisms were referred from CSOs to government agencies or vice versa, a sign of improved cooperation between civil society and authorities.