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Human Trafficking

Volume 487: debated on Monday 26 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what public services are available to people deemed to have been trafficked. (247523)

The Government fund the Poppy project to provide specialist support to adult victims of human trafficking. Victims are provided with unconditional intensive support for an initial four-week period, with longer-term term services provided in return for co-operation with a criminal investigation. Victims are offered support with resettlement and have access to compensation through the courts and the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme. It is also open to victims to apply for protection through existing humanitarian and immigration routes. Eligibility for non-third sector public services is in line with existing immigration policy.

The Government have ratified the Council of Europe Convention Action against Trafficking in Human Beings. This will enhance our existing measures by extending the reflection-period to a minimum of 45 days and introducing new renewable one-year residence permits for those co-operating with the authorities. The temporary residence permits will allow recourse to public funds. It will also remain open to victims to apply to stay using the existing human rights and immigration protection routes.