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GRETA publishes report on Denmark
Strasbourg, 20 December 2011 - The Council of Europeís Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) has published today its first evaluation report on Denmark.
In its report, GRETA notes the important steps taken by the Danish authorities to combat trafficking in human beings, including the setting up of the Danish Centre against Human Trafficking, the establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Working Group on Human Trafficking, and the adoption of multiannual national anti-trafficking action plans, the latest covering the period 2011-2014.
That said, GRETA considers that the Danish authorities should step up efforts to develop preventive measures and raise awareness about trafficking for the purpose of labour exploitation, in particular in the agriculture, construction and cleaning sectors.
GRETA is concerned that the identification of victims of trafficking has an illegal immigration focus. It urges the Danish authorities to ensure that potential victims of trafficking are treated in the first place as persons who have been exposed to human rights violations, rather than as offenders. In particular, GRETA calls for measures to ensure that potential victims of trafficking are not punished for their illegal entry or residence in Denmark while the identification procedure is pending.
In addition, more should be done to provide victims of trafficking with an adequate recovery and reflection period, rather than a time-limit to prepare their departure from the country. GRETA also considers that the Danish authorities should review the system for granting residence permits to victims of trafficking as well as the framework for their return and repatriation, in order to avoid re-victimisation and prevent re-trafficking.
Prior to drawing up its evaluation report, GRETA held consultations with the relevant authorities and non-governmental and international organisations active in the field of combating trafficking in human beings in Denmark. A confidential first draft of the report was sent to the Danish authorities and their comments were taken into account in the final evaluation report adopted by GRETA. This report is published together with the final comments of the Danish authorities, as provided for by the Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings.
On the basis of GRETAís report, the Committee of the Parties to the Convention will consider adopting recommendations addressed to the Government of Denmark.