[ Human Trafficking, Country-by-Country ]

MALTA (Tier 2) Extracted from the U.S. State Dept 2020 TIP Report

The Government of Malta 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 Malta remained on Tier 2. These efforts included increased victim care funding, public awareness campaigns, and convictions, which included significant prison sentences. However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas. The government decreased both investigations and prosecutions, identified and referred fewer victims, continued to lack coordination among ministries, and did not effectively enforce labor recruitment regulations or control massage parlors where vulnerability to trafficking was high.

Prioritized Recommendations

Increase efforts to vigorously and expeditiously investigate and prosecute trafficking offenses.Increase efforts to convict traffickers, including complicit officials, and sentence convicted traffickers to significant prison terms.Increase efforts and training of relevant staff and officials to proactively identify trafficking victims, including Maltese nationals, and among vulnerable populations, particularly children, migrant workers, and individuals in commercial sex.Improve coordination efforts among ministries to effectively implement a finalized and funded national action plan.Increase migrant worker protections by implementing strong regulations and oversight of recruitment companies that are consistently enforced, including prosecuting for fraudulent labor recruitment.Implement license control for massage parlors, including oversight and screening for trafficking victims.Increase collaboration between police and other stakeholders during investigations to decrease the length of investigations and prosecutions and to increase the possibility of successful convictions.Institutionalize anti-trafficking training for front-line officials, police officers, prosecutors, and judges, and use it to increase focus on working with victims.Ensure adequate availability of interpreters for victims.