The Government of Cote d’Ivoire does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but is making significant efforts to do so. The government demonstrated overall increasing efforts compared with the previous reporting period, considering the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on its anti-trafficking capacity; therefore Cote d’Ivoire remained on Tier 2. These efforts included identifying more victims and implementing an NRM with standard victim identification procedures. The government initiated a program to identify and refer vulnerable children, including potential trafficking victims, to care. Officials continued investigating and prosecuting trafficking crimes. However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas. Shelter and services, especially for adult victims, remained inadequate. The interagency anti-trafficking committee (CNLTP) did not meet and remained without dedicated funding for its operations for the fourth consecutive year. The government’s draft anti-trafficking NAP remained pending adoption for the second year. Law enforcement lacked the specialized training and adequate resources to effectively investigate trafficking cases and identify victims, and courts convicted significantly fewer traffickers. Labor inspectors did not identify any child trafficking cases during inspections, including in the cocoa sector.
The Government of Cote d’Ivoire should :
- Increase efforts to investigate and prosecute alleged traffickers, including complicit officials, and seek adequate penalties for convicted traffickers, which should involve significant prison terms.
- Institutionalize training for law enforcement and judicial officials on investigating and prosecuting trafficking cases under the 2016 anti-trafficking law, including specialized investigative and prosecutorial techniques.
- Fully implement and train front-line actors, including law enforcement, judicial officials, labor inspectors, social workers, and NGOs, on the NRM and standardized procedures to identify human trafficking victims, including among vulnerable populations such as Ivoirian labor migrants, foreign migrants, child laborers, and individuals in commercial sex.
- Strengthen the CNLTP’s authority to coordinate the government’s anti-trafficking efforts, including by providing dedicated financial resources, convening regular meetings, and finalizing an anti-trafficking NAP.
- Increase funding and in-kind resources, as feasible, for the anti-trafficking law enforcement units to investigate trafficking cases nationwide; delineate responsibilities and enhance coordination between the units.
- Increase the quantity and quality of care available for adult and child trafficking victims, including by providing financial and in-kind support to civil society providing victims shelter and services.
- Train law enforcement on effective, victim-centered investigation techniques and trauma-informed approaches when interviewing victims.
- Increase efforts to prevent exploitation of Ivoirian economic migrants abroad by extending labor protections to workers including in the informal sector, especially domestic work; increasing oversight of labor recruitment agencies and holding fraudulent labor recruiters criminally accountable; and banning worker-paid recruitment fees.
- Improve nationwide data collection on anti-trafficking law enforcement and victim identification efforts.
- Screen any North Korean workers for signs of trafficking and refer them to appropriate services, in a manner consistent with obligations under United Nations Security Council resolution 239.
from 2023 Trafficking in Persons Report – U.S. Department of State
2023 Trafficking in Persons Report – United States Department of State