European Network Against Trafficking in Human Beings

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Leaving the Past Behind? When Victims of Trafficking Decline Assistance

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Leaving the Past Behind? When Victims of Trafficking Decline Assistance
Anette Brunovskis, Rebecca Surtees
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Document type(s)
Fafo, Institute for Applied International studies, NEXUS Institute, Victims (of trafficking), Trafficked persons, Criminal proceedings; Legal assistance, Civil Law Suit, Human trafficking cases, Compensation, National Referral Mechanisms; Victim support services; Restitution; Remuneration; Individual complaint mechanisms;
The study considers the reasons that some trafficking victims decline assistance and examines the circumstances under which they do so. The report finds that victims decline assistance for a large variety of reasons, stemming from their personal circumstances; because of the way assistance is organized; and due to factors in their social surroundings, including negative assistance experiences in the past. Many do not accept because they feel it is not a real option, and are left to cope on their own with unattended post-trafficking problems. One insight is that victims who decline often have other assistance needs than those catered for within the assistance system today. Understanding the reasons, experiences and perceptions of persons who do not participate in assistance programmes can play an important role in developing and tailoring anti-trafficking services to meet the needs and desires of as many trafficking victims as possible. The report benefits from the experiences of trafficked persons who have both accepted and declined assistance as well service providers and other as anti-trafficking actors.
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