Data from specialised counselling centres for trafficked persons show shortcomings in access to victims' rights
In 2022, 875 cases of trafficking in human beings were documented by specialised counselling centres in the KOK data tool. 733 cases were disclosed for data analysis. The majority of trafficked persons come from West African countries. In 47% of all analysed cases, Germany was identified as the place of exploitation. Preliminary proceedings were initiated in 35 % of the cases.
Berlin, 18.10.2023 - On the occasion of the EU Anti-Trafficking Day, KOK – German NGO Network against Trafficking in Human Beings presents its fourth data report on trafficking in human beings and exploitation in Germany. The data collection of specialised counselling centres for trafficked persons provides important insights into counselling practice in Germany.
A look at the rights of trafficked persons
The data from the specialised counselling centres show to what extent trafficked persons in Germany have access to victims' rights and protection. "For about half of the clients, their residence prospects are uncertain or have not yet been clarified. However, this is often a prerequisite for psychological stability and the assertion of their legal claims, such as alimentation, safe accommodation, access to work or the assertion of wage or compensation claims," explains Margarete Mureșan, KOK board member and head of the counselling centre IN VIA Berlin-Brandenburg. "Trafficking in human beings must not only be viewed from a criminal law perspective. Improving the implementation of victims' rights for trafficked persons is urgently needed. Access to a humanitarian residence title, as foreseen in the coalition agreement, would be crucial here," Mureșan concludes further.
Data from specialised counselling centres expand the official statistics on trafficking in human beings
The annual Federal Situation Reports Trafficking in Human Beings of the Federal Criminal Police Office only include concluded proceedings. Preliminary proceedings were initiated in only 259 of the 733 cases documented by the specialised counselling centres. In 77 cases, charges were pressed. In order to be able to depict the extent of the phenomenon of trafficking in human beings in Germany and the needs of those affected, it is essential to take into account the data from civil society practice. "The data collected by KOK proves the often challenging socio-economic and legal residence problems of trafficked persons. Sustainably developed and accessible support structures as well as a right of residence for trafficked persons independent of cooperation in criminal proceedings could significantly improve the situation for many trafficked persons," emphasises Sophia Wirsching, executive director of the KOK.