Strengthening action against trafficking in Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg county

Publicated on: May 3, 2023

Stakeholders in the region involved in prevention and victim assistance gathered to discuss the current issues on 27 April 2023.

At the national level, the National Coordination Mechanism has been operational since 2008 and the NGO Roundtable since 2011, with the active participation of ministries involved in the fight against trafficking, the Police, the Prosecution Service and the judiciary, as well as NGOs working in this field.

Government Decision No. 1228/2022 adopting the Action Plan of the National Anti-Trafficking Strategy for 2022–2023 aimed to kick off the cooperation at county and capital level as well. The professional and organizational tasks related to this objective are carried out jointly by the Ministry of Interior, responsible for the fight against trafficking in human beings, and the Ministry of Justice, which plays a central role in victim assistance.

The county of Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg is mostly considered a source region of trafficking in human beings for sexual purposes. Several charities are helping disadvantaged and vulnerable groups here, and law enforcement agencies are also making significant progress in detecting human trafficking and bringing perpetrators to justice.

The local level coordination mechanism already has a history: in 2017, the National Police Headquarters convened the stakeholders in Nyíregyháza three times. Now a wide range of organizations joined the meeting, including the Police, the victim support, guardianship and employment supervision departments of the government office, the Victim Support Centre, the municipality of Nyíregyháza, the hospital of the town, as well as the civil guard, local NGOs and churches.

The main purpose of the event was to introduce the continuous improvement of victim support services (e.g. shelters and low-threshold assistance) at the national level and exchange experience between the experts. At the same time, it was a good occasion to identify the local needs and provide information on grant opportunities. Along the above themes, the cooperation will continue, with the next meeting scheduled for autumn 2023.

The report of Kölcsey TV (county-level broadcaster) is available here.


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