Bangladesh has been placed in 'Tier-2’ again in the US human trafficking report 2015 which means the governments do not fully comply with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act’s (TVPA) minimum standards.
Secretary of State John Kerry released the report on Monday in Washington, and said, “The bottom line is that this is no time for complacency”.
This is the fourth consecutive year that Bangladesh has been put in ‘Tier-2’ category.
This year’s report places a special emphasis on human trafficking in the global marketplace as huge numbers of trafficking victims rescued from the sea and number of mass graves of trafficking victims found recently.
Hundreds of Bangladeshi victims also rescued from the sea and jungle of Thai coast.
Each country is placed on one of three tiers based on the extent of their governments’ efforts to comply with the “minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking” enshrined in Section 108 of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act.
The report asked Bangladesh to finalise, adopt and disseminate the implementing rules for the PSHTA, and train government officials to implement it.
It noted that the government made “limited efforts to protect victims of trafficking”.
The government reported the rescue of 2,621 human trafficking victims in 2014, an increase from 1,090 in 2013.
Because a formal mechanism was lacking to refer victims to care, only nine of the 2,621 victims identified were placed in government-operated shelters.
According to the report, the government made limited efforts to prevent trafficking, and continued to allow Bangladesh Association International Recruitment Agencies (BAIRA) to set extremely high and legal recruitment fees.
The authorities did not exercise adequate oversight to ensure BAIRA’s licensing and certification practices did not facilitate debt bondage of Bangladeshi workers abroad.
The government drafted, but did not finalise and launch, the 2015-2017 national plan of action against human trafficking, the US report said.
It also said that the government did not fund anti-trafficking awareness campaigns in 2014.