Human trafficking in Australasia

Szablewska, N. (2018). Human trafficking in Australasia. In: Piotrowicz, R.; Rijken, C. and Uhl, B. H. eds. Routledge Handbook of Human Trafficking. Routledge, pp. 78–92.



The crime of trafficking in human beings (THB) affects virtually every country in the world, whether as countries of origin, transit, or destination for victims, and in most cases as a combination thereof. This chapter assesses the current anti-trafficking legal frameworks and policy responses within the Australasian context, and in particular in relation to the three main obligations under the Palermo Protocol, i.e. to prevent (THB), to protect (victims of trafficking), and to prosecute (traffickers). This chapter firstly analyses the relevant policies, legislative regimes, and the current criminal justice responses in Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands (focusing mainly on Fiji and Papua New Guinea (PNG)), followed by a discussion of regional initiatives to tackle THB. There follows further assessment of what lessons could be learnt from the particular national anti-trafficking policies and regional arrangements in Australasia. There is a positive correlation between effective legislation and regulation of offences and their effective investigation and prosecution.

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