[ Human Trafficking, Country-by-Country ]

The Federated States of Micronesia (FSM)  (Tier 2) Extracted in part  from the U.S. State Dept 2023 TIP Report

The Government of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) 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 FSM remained on Tier 2.  These efforts included conducting awareness raising activities, administering training to its law enforcement officials, constructing and beginning operation of its fourth shelter, and continuing the prosecution of a government official for alleged sex trafficking.  The government, in partnership with an international organization, drafted victim identification and referral SOPs.  However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas.  Authorities identified and assisted fewer trafficking victims.  The government investigated fewer trafficking crimes and did not initiate any trafficking prosecutions or convict any traffickers.

Prioritized Recommendations

Investigate and prosecute trafficking crimes, including those involving family members and complicit officials, and seek adequate penalties for convicted traffickers, which should involve significant prison terms.

Increase efforts to identify and assist more victims, such as by disseminating and training officials on victim identification and referral SOPs.

Establish an MOU between the national government and state governments to ensure trafficking victims identified by state governments can access services at the national level.

Screen for trafficking indicators among vulnerable groups, including individuals in commercial sex.

Institutionalize anti-trafficking training for police, immigration officials, prosecutors, and state level judges, including on how to implement a victim-centered approach.

Increase resources for protection services and collaborate with, and provide financial or in-kind support to, NGOs who assist trafficking victims.

Update and implement the NAP and state-level plans.

Improve coordination and communication between national and state government agencies and NGOs by regularizing national and state task force meetings and allocating resources to their activities.

Conduct anti-trafficking awareness campaigns targeting traditional leaders, health care professionals, and the public, including FSM citizens who might migrate for work overseas.

Monitor foreign labor recruitment for trafficking indicators, including the coercive use of debt.

Take steps to eliminate recruitment or placement fees charged to workers by labor recruiters and ensure any recruitment fees are paid by employers.

Provide legal alternatives to the removal of foreign trafficking victims to countries where they may face hardship or retribution.