The National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking (NCCHT) has intensified efforts to provide health and legal care to victims and support their psychological wellbeing in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
His Excellency Dr. Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Chairman of NCCHT, stressed that the UAE is committed to strengthening and protecting victims of this crime through flexible policies it has adopted and is constantly updating, as well as through its tireless efforts to provide all forms of support to victims during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Committee has addressed the threat this virus poses to public health since the beginning of the crisis with the highest degree of seriousness and transparency. Furthermore, programs and measures have been undertaken to protect victims in all fields and of all nationalities without discrimination or exception. The Committee also sought to establish a comprehensive policy to prevent the crime of human trafficking while protecting and caring for victims in all circumstances,” His Excellency added.
“The Committee has worked to help victims overcome many of the obstacles they may face in light of the spread of this pandemic in their home countries, considering the difficulty of returning home due to the closure of many countries’ airports as part of precautionary measures to reduce the virus’ spread. As such, the Committee provided health, psychological, and legal assistance, as well as training, recreational initiatives, and programs for victims of human trafficking to safely return to their home countries,” Gargash said.
The NCHHT expressed appreciation for the support provided by the relevant UAE authorities to overcome current challenges, affirming that such backing contributed significantly to facilitating the operation of shelters for victims, from their initial intake to their eventual departure.
It is worth noting that these shelters implemented all possible precautionary measures to protect victims and staff. Moreover, they have provided medical services in cooperation with health authorities and have been staffed with medical professionals around the clock.
Moreover, shelters organized numerous training programs for employees to encourage full adherence to preventative measures. Awareness programs were also organized for victims to underscore the importance of precautionary actions such as handwashing and physical distancing.
Shelters also allocated special places for individuals showing any symptoms of COVID-19, thereby contributing to the health and safety of victims, considering no cases have been recorded in such centers to date.
Having offered numerous services to victims to alleviate the impact of COVID-19, shelters also provided those under their care with a monetary disbursement to send to their families and telecommunications services to connect them with family members, in addition to other rehabilitation and recreational initiatives developed in recent days.
Source: UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs