Other Initiatives

Malta's National Rapporteur or Equivalent Mechanism

As from 2021, the Human Rights Initiatives Unit acted as the National Rapporteur or Equivalent Mechanism on matters related to Human Trafficking. It has represented the Human Rights Directorate, within the Ministry of Home Affairs, Security, Reforms and Equality on several international events organised by the EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, the Council of Europe and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

Networking Working Session for Policy Development and Programme Implementation Officers

On Friday 29th July 2022 the Human Rights Initiatives Unit organised a networking event for Government officials representing all Ministries, namely, the Policy Development and Programme Implementation (PDPI) Officers, with the aim to strengthen national cooperation to combat human trafficking. The sessions included interventions from Parliamentary Secretary Reforms and Equality Hon. Rebecca Buttigieg, Permanent Secretary MHSR Mr. Emanuel Psaila, Director Human Rights Directorate Mr. Michael Camilleri and Senior Manager Human Rights Initiatives Unit Dr. Lynn Chircop Faure.

In addition, given the multi-agency and intersectional elements of tackling human trafficking, speakers were invited from the Ministry for Foreign and European Affairs and Trade represented by Mr John Busuttil, the Malta Information Technology Agency (MITA) represented by Mr. Martin Camilleri, the National Statistics Office (NSO) represented by Mr. Matthew Zerafa, and the Malta Police Force represented by Assistant Commissioner Dr. Dennis Theuma.

This activity not only provided information on Malta’s obligations to tackle this crime, but also discussed ways and means to enhance current cooperative mechanisms, such as the setting up of an Inter-Ministerial Committee made up of representatives from each respective Ministry to ensure the development of comprehensive policies and the involvement of all sectors.

The Initiatives Unit reported on the implementation of national actions and measures to prevent human trafficking in Malta, protect the potential and identified victims of trafficking and prosecute the suspected persons involved in such criminal activities. The CALL FOR ACTION​ document also contains the Recommendations to Malta published by the International Organisations on the subject matter.

Research coordinated by the Human Rights Initiatives Unit

Research on Legislation, Policies, Strategies and Guidelines concerning Trafficking in Human Beings - July 2021

Research on the relevant legal provisions and the lacunas in the domestic legal framework - July 2022​

Application for funding under the EU Technical Support Instrument

The Directorate has been awarded assistance through the Technical Support Instrument of the European Union – a project funded by the European Commission’s DG Reform in collaboration with the Council of Europe. Through this project an expert shall be assigned to Malta to support in the drafting of the National Strategy and Action Plan (post 2023). The project activities shall include a thorough study of past and ongoing consultative processes, in-depth needs-analysis whilst taking into account obligations and current recommendations, further consultation with stakeholders and civil society, and a detailed implementation plan feeding into the actual Strategy.

HRIU invited OSCE for a visit in January 2022

The Director HRD and the members of the HRIU within HRD, had the opportunity to meet the OSCE Special Representative and Coordinator for Combatting Trafficking in Human Beings Dr Valiant Richey. Together they exchanged best practices and discussed the anti-human trafficking reform in Malta.

The OSCE Special Representative also met with the Minister for Equality, Research and Innovation Hon. Dr. Owen Bonnici and other national stakeholders working in the field to discuss their activities and contribution towards this issue.


HRIU Managers delivered a presentation during Roundtable organised by FSWS

12 April – HRIU provided a PPT presentation​ on the role of NREMs to inform round table about the reporting functions HRIU has been carrying out on an administrative level, the cooperation required by Public-Private-Civil Society in general to gather the required data and the ongoing initiative which includes a consultative process with stakeholders and the need for their participation during networking event being planned for July 2022.

The organisations represented on the round table were invited to participate in our information sessions and to set a one-to one meeting with civil society organisations as we did with most of the gov entities.

12th June – UN Child Labour Day

Child Labour is "work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential and their dignity, and that is harmful to physical and mental development".

Child Labour day is an international day, launched in 2002 by The International Labour Organisation, that is held annually on the 12th of June to raise awareness about the mental and physical problems children forced into child labour endure, in order to try and eradicate it.

2021 | 2022​ | 2023​

2nd December – UN International Day for the Abolition of Slavery

Slavery is when someone is forcefully deprived from their rights. Slavery comes in many forms like; human trafficking, forced labour, sexual exploitation, forced marriage, and child labour.

The International Abolition of Slavery was organised by the United Nations General Assembly in 1986. The aim of this event is to help eliminate slavery.

On the occasion of the International Day for the Abolition of Slavery on 2nd December, Dr Lynn Chircop Faure (Senior Manager HRD) reaffirmed our commitment to the process underway to reform Malta’s national human trafficking policies with the aim of eradicating contemporary forms of slavery.

2021​ | 2022

Malta Steps Up Efforts to Meet Minimum Standards

​The Government of Malta demonstrated significant efforts to meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking compared with the previous reporting periods. These achievements included investigating and prosecuting more suspected traffickers, updating its National Action Plan, increasing funding for victim assistance, and continuing to provide a trafficking awareness campaign for the third consecutive year. The government also hosted a regional training and a series of seminars, which included trafficking survivor panelists. However, considering the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, if any, on its anti-trafficking capacity, Malta remained on Tier 2.

Malta has already stepped up its efforts to address the prioritized recommendations - https://www.state.gov/reports/2023-trafficking-in-persons-report/malta/

  • Improve effective leadership and prioritization of human trafficking, as well as streamline anti-trafficking coordination and communication efforts among ministries.

The Initiatives Unit within the Directorate for Human Rights facilitated the establishment of a mechanism for national reporting in October 2022, through the Anti-Human Trafficking Inter-Ministerial Committee and is coordinating the all requests from International and National organizations through Focal Persons who have been appointed by each Ministry to report on issues concerning human trafficking.
  • Increase training for and efforts to pursue financial crime investigations in tandem with human trafficking cases.

The FIAU, together with the Finance Against Slavery & Trafficking (FAST) have organised a Public-Private Partnership Initiative which will consist in a Roundtable discussion on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Risks and the Financial Sector in Malta. The objective of this roundtable discussion is to raise awareness among the financial sector of Malta and discuss and develop human trafficking indicators and red flags to improve the reporting in Malta, amongst other objectives.  The event will be attended by Credit Institutions, a number of Financial Institutions providing services in Malta, as well as a number of competent, supervisory and other public authorities.

Source: U.S. Department of State 2023 Trafficking in Persons Report

An Initiative to Inform Victims about their Legal Rights

Any person who falls victim to any type of crime in a Member State of which they are not nationals or residents, should be provided with specialist support and legal protection.

These services and their staff play an important role in supporting the victim with their recovery and with overcoming potential harm or trauma as a result of a criminal offence.

The EU Directive provides the types of support that national support services should offer to victims of human trafficking.  These include providing shelter and safe accommodation, immediate medical support, referral to medical and forensic examination for evidence in cases of rape or sexual assault, short and long-term psychological counselling, trauma care, legal advice, advocacy and specific services for children as direct or indirect victims.

  • Directive 2012/29/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime, and replacing Council Framework Decision 2001/220/JHA
  • Chapter 539 of the Laws of Malta – Victims of Crime Act https://legislation.mt/eli/cap/539/eng/pdf​