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13 August 2017
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Patsy Travels to Montenegro to Conduct a Peer-to-Peer Review
From July 17-20, 2017, Patsy Sörensen participated in a Peer-to-Peer Review in Montenegro to evaluate their progress on the fight against human trafficking. The review took place in different locations across Montenegro. Patsy Sörensen came as an expert in the social domain alongside Pitran Silviu, a police official from Romania and Caroline Charpentier, a French judge.
On July 17, discussions were held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on a number of Montenegro’s National Action Plans (NAPs) including the National Strategy for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings and several other NAPs such as the NAP for Children, the NAP for the Social Inclusion of the Roma, and the NAP for Achieving Gender Equality. Subsequently, discussions were held on relevant components of the Criminal Code, the Law on Foreigners, the Law on Compensation of damages for victims of violence crime, the Law on Asylum and other relevant sections. Many officials from the Montenegrin government were present including officials from the State Prosecutor’s Office, officials from the National Office against THB, the Minister of Justice, the Minister of Labour and Social Welfare, and the Chief Labour Inspector of the country.
The next day, Patsy met with a number of important NGOs including
- the MNE Women’s Lobby,
- the Centre for Roma Initiatives,
- Walk with Us,
- Centre for Women’s Rights
- SOS Niksic and Podgorica,
- Human Rights Action
- Juventas (work with prostitution)
Patsy was encouraged about some of the changes she observed: the government has adopted some new legislation that provides victims with a reflection period and one of the main NGOs now seems to be acting much more proactively. However, there remains a concern about victim identification. The number of victims identified is extremely low and in 2016, no victims have been detected in the prostitution industry nor in the domain of forced labour. Patsy is now preparing her report which will eventually be submitted to the European Commission.