Criminal justice actors, ministry officials, and NGO staff from St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Barbados attended the Workshop/Conference on Human Trafficking in the Caribbean, designed to encourage open dialogue on the policy and day-to-day response to TIP cases among the representatives from the two countries.  Warnath Group Experts Albert Moskowitz and Karen Rigby facilitated this workshop in Bridgetown, Barbados February 15-16, 2018.

Warnath Group Expert and U.S. Department of State TIP Hero Karen Rigby, and the Honorable Adriel Brathwaite, the Attorney-General of Barbados, began the conference with opening remarks focused on the presence of TIP in the region.

The Warnath Group’s teaching techniques and approaches included case studies requiring participants to apply legal and strategic principles to fact scenarios; interactive expression and participation through classroom response-ware technology; initial contact and evidentiary interview role-play exercises with local actors playing human trafficking victims; and both facilitated and participant-led discussions of various issues related to TIP responses in the two countries.  These methods enhanced the interactive educational strength and relevance of the workshop and encouraged vigorous feedback and discussion, as well as supported real-time course tailoring by the trainers to the needs of the participants.

Participants representing the Anti-TIP Unit of the Royal St. Vincent and the Grenadines Police Force, the Ministry of Gender Affairs in Barbados, and the Women and Children Sex-Crime Unit of the Royal Barbados Police Force presented their experiences fighting human trafficking and supporting victims in the participant-led discussions on trafficking in the Caribbean and Standard Operating Procedures.  This unique opportunity allowed the workshop participants to formally engage with others in the region about their successes and challenges.

At the conclusion of the workshop participants provided feedback describing how the conference would improve their professional efforts to identify, investigate and prosecute traffickers, while at the same time, gaining victim cooperation.  One participant shared that “the ideas were very helpful, knowing the correct way to deal with victims.  I am now better able to identify and deal with issues involving human trafficking if they arise.”

Following this workshop, the Warnath Group will use mobile web survey technology and established relationships with designated bridge participants to continue communication and remain a resource for all conference participants.

This workshop was made possible by the U.S. Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (J/TIP), and with the assistance of the U.S. Embassy in Barbados, the Eastern Caribbean, and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States.

 

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