Tuesday, 6 March 2007
Dáil Eireann Debate
191. Mr. Bruton asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform his plans to introduce legislation to combat human trafficking and to ratify United Nations Protocols and European Conventions in this area. [8680/07]
209. Mr. Connolly asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform when, as the sole EU Justice Minister without anti-trafficking legislation in place, he will bring forward legislation criminalising the trafficking of human beings for the purposes of labour or sexual exploitation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8788/07]
I recently announced my intention to ask the Government to sign the Council of Europe Convention on Action Against Trafficking in Human Beings. I also stated that it is intended, as part of the new Immigration policy framework to provide a clear policy statement setting out how these cases will be managed once it is established that trafficking has taken place. I would reiterate, however, that the lack of a specific legislative provision on the victims of trafficking has in no way reduced Ireland’s commitment to dealing with cases sympathetically as they arise.
As I informed the House on 31 January the Government approved the drafting of the Criminal Law (Trafficking in Persons and Sexual Offences) Bill 2006 last July. It is at present being drafted in the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel. The Bill is criminal law legislation which will implement the criminal law aspects of EU, UN and Council of Europe instruments on trafficking by creating offences of recruiting, transporting, transferring to another person, harbouring or knowingly arranging or facilitating—
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