JIS News

Story Highlights

  • Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, says Jamaica is aiming for Tier 1 ranking in the Fight against Trafficking in Persons (TIP) by the United States' Department of State.
  • Countries with a Tier 1 ranking are those whose governments fully comply with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) minimum standards.
  • “There is still a certain amount of abuse of women, so there is a level of human trafficking in Jamaica. Females, in general, are being exploited... and young boys, (being) sent out to beg by (adults)... can be considered modern day slavery or human trafficking,” he said.

Justice Minister, Hon. Delroy Chuck, says Jamaica is aiming for Tier 1 ranking in the Fight against Trafficking in Persons (TIP) by the United States’ Department of State.

He said the efforts will continue, through public education, to raise awareness about the issue among the populace.

Minister Chuck was addressing the launch of the National Task Force Against Trafficking in Persons’ (NATFATIP) islandwide tour at the Justice Ministry in St. Andrew on March 28.

Countries with a Tier 1 ranking are those whose governments fully comply with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) minimum standards.

Currently, Jamaica has a Tier 2 ranking, which was upgraded from the Tier Two Watch List last year.

Tier 2 consists of those countries whose governments do not fully meet the TVPA’s minimum standards, but are making significant efforts to comply.

Mr. Chuck noted that there are issues that need to be addressed before the country can achieve the desired Tier 1 ranking.

“There is still a certain amount of abuse of women, so there is a level of human trafficking in Jamaica. Females, in general, are being exploited… and young boys, (being) sent out to beg by (adults)… can be considered modern day slavery or human trafficking,” he said.

“Once we remove these elements and we can successfully prosecute persons, then we can successfully be at Tier 1,” he noted.

During the launch, members of the Justice Ministry marched to Half-Way Tree to hand out flyers, brochures and bumper stickers with the message to stop human trafficking.

Deputy Superintendent of Police, Carl Berry, who heads the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Anti-Trafficking in Persons Unit emphasised that “human trafficking must be forcefully stopped”.

The NATFATIP islandwide tour is a public awareness campaign aimed at raising knowledge about human trafficking and educating persons on prevention measures.

It is being carried out under the theme ‘Be Wise. Open Your Eyes. Spot Them. Stop Them. Report Them’.

Based on information from the NATFATIP, more Jamaicans need to understand that human trafficking is a real and serious problem that strips persons of their dignity and self-worth, evidenced by domestic servitude, sexual exploitation and other forms of dehumanising activities.