Prevention of human trafficking in Cameroon (TIP 2023)

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The government increased prevention efforts.  The IMC continued to lead the government’s anti-trafficking efforts and convened at least twice during the reporting period.  In February 2023, the prime minister signed two separate orders to establish regional anti-trafficking committees in all 10 regions and develop a national platform to enhance coordination and improve information sharing among government ministries and civil society.  The government continued to implement its 2021-2024 NAP.  The government also began drafting an updated NAP, and the IMC sought input from local NGOs and trafficking survivors during the drafting process.  The IMC organized awareness-raising activities in schools for students, teachers, and administrative staff and reported providing in-kind and financial resources to NGO-run awareness campaigns.  MINAS continued to operate a trafficking-specific hotline; the government did not report if any victims were identified or if cases were referred to law enforcement.  The Cameroon Human Rights Commission and the gendarmerie also operated hotlines to report human rights violations and abuses, including human trafficking.

The government did not effectively regulate foreign labor recruiters or report taking measures to hold fraudulent labor recruiters accountable.  The government did not report auditing any companies or private labor placement offices, compared with 60 audits that led to an unspecified number of suspensions and closures in the previous reporting period.  Observers reported Cameroonians frequently used unauthorized recruiters to seek employment abroad, which increased their vulnerability to trafficking.  The National Social Insurance Fund (NSIF) launched a national campaign to formally register domestic workers and identify situations of potential exploitation.  Through the program, NSIF conducted home visits to ensure registration of domestic workers for tax withholding and unemployment insurance to prevent non-payment of wages and reduce vulnerabilities to labor trafficking; however, authorities did not report identifying any potential cases of exploitation or efforts to hold employers with unregistered employees accountable.

The government, in partnership with an international organization, started a pilot project issuing biometric identification cards to displaced persons, including refugee women from the Central African Republic (CAR) vulnerable to trafficking, in Lom-et-Djerem.  The lack of birth certificates increased the vulnerability of individuals to trafficking.  A previous report estimated at least 1.6 million children enrolled in schools did not have birth certificates.  An NGO attributed the lack of birth certificates to internal and external problems faced by the government such as poor record keeping, staff shortage, and the violence and insecurity in the Northwest and Southwest regions.  The government reported conducting three months of pre-deployment anti-trafficking training to its troops prior to their deployment as peacekeepers.  The government did not provide anti-trafficking training to its diplomatic personnel.  The government did not make efforts to reduce the demand for commercial sex acts.

from 2023 Trafficking in Persons Report – U.S. Department of State

2023 Trafficking in Persons Report – United States Department of State

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