As the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security continues to organize training for key persons across the country who may come into contact with perpetrators and victims of human trafficking, members of the Special Constabulary are now being brought up to speed on the issue at a two-day training.
The ministry’s Counter Trafficking in Person (C-TIP) unit is hosting the training which kicked off on Thursday morning.
Subject minister Dr. Vindhya Persaud feels strongly about the issue and has often referred to it as a heinous crime against humanity. She has personally visited several of these training sessions to urge participants to speak up when they see it happening. She has emphasized the need for perpetrators to be identified and prosecuted.
Head of the Special Constabulary and Special Superintendent Owen Trotz said the training is timely and will come in handy for him and his officers. The constabulary has over 1,000 staff members throughout the country and covers most of the government ministries and agencies, even providing protection for judges, magistrates, and other officers.
“We see most forms of TIP so this training is timely and I am excited that the officers would be better equipped to deal with all forms of abuse. They would be able to give information to the police, take some initial action and even give information to the ministry and other agencies,” he expressed.
Trotz called attention to the number of underage girls from Venezuela who are working at wash bays and other businesses with little pay. He has also noticed that the people who come from Brazil, Dominica, and other countries to practice prostitution here, are often treated badly.
Also commenting on the training was participant Romeo Samuels who said he believes the training would have a great impact because it would provide for a better understanding of TIP.
Meanwhile, a group of Venezuelan re-migrants who came from Regions One, Two, Three, Four, and Seven was recently trained by the ministry.
“Identifying the traffickers is the biggest problem, but if they’re not stopped more will join them. The only way to end this is to put these people behind bars; if they feel they can get off, they won’t stop. Let’s go out there stronger together. Trafficking in Persons is a heinous crime against people,” Minister Persaud had told the participants.
According to her, it was important for the re-migrants to be trained because when they come to the country they must understand its policies, laws, and procedures. “The community engagement is the best engagement. We’re trying different avenues of how we engage people,” she said.
The C-TIP unit has also concluded training with the Guyana Police Force and Guyana Defense Force, among other agencies.