Barbados upgraded to Tier 2 in TIP report
Barbados attained a rating of Tier 2 from the United States for its efforts to deal with Trafficking in Persons (TIP).
In a review of selected CARICOM countries in its 2022 TIP Report, which assesses the anti-trafficking efforts of 188 governments, Washington stated that while some countries did not meet the minimum standards, others were making efforts to deal with the situation.
The report stated that Barbados “does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, but is making significant efforts to do so”.
It said that the government demonstrated overall increasing efforts compared with the previous reporting period, considering the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on its anti-trafficking capacity; therefore, Barbados was upgraded to Tier 2.
“These efforts included significantly increasing investigations; initiating two prosecutions, and doing so for the first time since 2013; identifying a victim for the first time since 2016; improving victim screening, including by assessing whether authorities inappropriately incarcerated victims; making efforts to address complicity among police officers; and launching a public awareness campaign,” the report stated.
“However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas. The government has never secured a trafficking conviction under the Trafficking in Persons Prevention Act (TIPPA). The anti-trafficking law did not provide penalties that were commensurate with other serious crimes. The government did not contribute to training for any officials.”
Countries assessed as fully meeting the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking are placed on Tier 1, while those assessed as not fully meeting the minimum standards, but making significant efforts to meet them are placed on Tier 2 or Tier 2 Watch List.
Countries assessed as not fully meeting the minimum standards and not making significant efforts to do so are ranked Tier 3.
Overall, the U.S. gave Caricom countries mixed reviews for their efforts to deal with Trafficking in Persons with Washington indicating that some of the countries did not even meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking.