The establishment and functioning of Barbados??? Anti-Trafficking Inter-Ministerial Task Force is a reflection of this country???s commitment to addressing issues pertaining to the trafficking of persons.
This was underscored recently when Ambassador-at-Large, Luis CdeBaca, paid a courtesy call on Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator Maxine McClean.
The Minister noted that Barbados was renowned internationally for its political stability, its democratic traditions, its respect for the rule of law and its commitment to the protection of the human rights. She also mentioned that Barbados, like most small developing states, faced a number of challenges, in terms of capacity, and these were exacerbated by the global economic recession.
She added that the country was seeking to overcome these hurdles by implementing a systematic and structured approach that would lead to improvements in coordinating anti-trafficking efforts, as well as the implementation of policies.
While pointing out that the legal anti-trafficking framework was in place, Minister McClean said Barbados had done much work in combatting the trafficking of persons, and that she hoped there would be an improvement in this country???s ranking under the 2014 Trafficking In Persons (TIP) Report.
The Anti-Trafficking Inter-Ministerial Task Force is chaired by the Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite. Its members are drawn primarily from the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade and Labour; the Immigration, Customs and Welfare Departments; the Royal Barbados Police Force; the Child Care Board; and the Bureau of Gender Affairs.
In lauding the steps being taken by Barbados, Ambassador CdeBaca said the information gathered from the meetings held here would assist United States officials in preparing the 2014 TIP Report.
In May 2009, Ambassador CdeBaca was appointed to coordinate US Government activities in the global fight against contemporary forms of slavery.
He serves as Senior Advisor in the State Department???s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which assesses global trends, provides training and technical assistance, and advocates for an end to modern slavery.
Following the courtesy call, Minister McClean was presented with a copy of the US TIP Report for 2013.