[ Country-by-Country Reports ]

BURKINA FASO (Tier 2) Extracted in part from U.S. State Dept TIP Report, June 2020]

The Government of Burkina Faso 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 to the previous reporting period; therefore Burkina Faso remained on Tier 2. These efforts included collaborating with international organizations to train officials on child trafficking and protecting children in violent conflict, implementing a new agreement with Cote d’Ivoire, and adopting multiple national strategy documents that would address child trafficking. Despite also being responsible for managing a complex humanitarian response in which the number of IDPs increased more than fivefold over the year, the Ministry of Women coordinated the second phase of a program to remove vulnerable children from the streets, including forced begging victims. However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas. Due to the justice sector being overburdened with terrorism-related cases, the government did not report investigating, prosecuting, or convicting any trafficking cases or other cases not related to terrorism. Efforts to identify and provide care to adult trafficking victims remained weak. The anti-trafficking committee did not meet or conduct any activities during the reporting period. For the second year in a row, the Ministry of Women did not coordinate with law enforcement during a campaign to remove vulnerable children from the streets.

Prioritized Recommendations

Collaborate with international organizations and foreign donors to adopt a handover protocol for children associated with non-state armed groups and establish a reintegration program for those children.Increase efforts to vigorously investigate, prosecute, and convict traffickers—including corrupt Quranic teachers who exploit children in forced begging and complicit officials—and sentence convicted traffickers to significant prison terms, as prescribed in the 2008 anti-trafficking law.Train law enforcement and military officials on the standard operating procedures to identify victims among vulnerable populations, including women in prostitution and children associated with non-state armed groups, and refer them to protective services.Strengthen the system for collecting law enforcement and victim identification data.Facilitate training of law enforcement, prosecutors, and judicial officials on investigating and prosecuting trafficking cases, including cases that do not involve movement.Increase the availability of shelter and services for all victims, including adults. Investigate recruitment agencies suspected of fraudulently recruiting women for exploitation abroad.Increase funding and resources for police and security force units charged with investigating trafficking crimes.Increase funding and in-kind support, as feasible, for victim services, including long-term services and social reintegration.Work with NGOs to raise awareness of trafficking, especially forced begging in Quranic schools and trafficking that does not involve movement.Improve coordination among the anti-trafficking and child protection committees by providing funding or in-kind resources, convening regularly, and sharing data.Draft, approve, and implement a national action plan to combat trafficking.