GħSL publishes Human Trafficking policy paper -

Earlier today, GħSL – Malta Law Students’ Society launched their new policy paper on Human Trafficking, with the aim of “raising awareness on the prevalence of the phenomenon in our society.” By presenting a number of proposals on the way forward for Malta, GħSL also took a more active approaching in mitigating the phenomenon, and the effects that it can have on a societal and individual level.”

The policy paper, entitled ‘Human Trafficking: the Root of the Problem and the Path Forward’, puts forward four proposals with regard to the mitigation of human trafficking cases in Malta. While GħSL acknowledged that no anti-human trafficking system is perfect, and that Malta has already made substantial legislative efforts to reduce the prevalence of human trafficking, it has nevertheless undertaken the task of examining in-depth the local and international legislative frameworks behind this issue, to further explore room for improvement and added effectiveness.

The policy paper examines different legislative frameworks, ranging from International Treaties, to the EU acquis, as well as Maltese domestic law; after this detailed examination, the policy paper proceeds to compare the domestic of laws of other countries, namely, the United States, Austria, China, and Russia, countries are currently on the forefront in the fight to combatting the phenomenon, and therefore are able to provide further insight.

The proposals put forward by GħSL are the following:

1) A recognition on the difficulty posed by confronting this phenomenon, and acknowledging that a perfect anti-human trafficking system is difficult to achieve


2) The setting up of a task force to specifically combat human trafficking


3) A specific training regime and support system to people in high-risk zones


4) A tangible effort to further increase awareness on the subject on a local level


GħSL’s Policy Officer Celine Cuschieri Debono, described the underlying idea behind this policy paper as thus: “We did not simply want this paper to take a narrow legalistic approach. Rather, we wanted to delve into specific human trafficking cases, as well as the negative, life-long psychological and medical effects on the individual, and the economic impact on society, that arise directly from human trafficking. We believe that this gives the paper a more humane approach which is essential when dealing with such a sensitive topic. The multi-faceted approach taken in the process of writing this paper is crucial towards understanding the issue from all angles, and therefore exposing its complexity to the public, most especially the legal field.”

“We also acknowlegde the legislative efforts that have been made in Malta in recent years, but believe that with more awareness and more resources dedicated to anti-human trafficking, the fight against human trafficking can be considerably bolstered , and the number of cases can significantly be reduced.”

GħSL President Lara Attard, while commending the work done by the contributors and peer-reviewers who made this paper possible, stated “With the publication of such a paper, the GħSL executive is keeping true to its commitment to be pro-active in the legal field. The organisation is constantly striving to spark informed and educated debates, both within the University grounds and on a national level. And with this policy paper, we hope to instigate another such debate on a very complex topic.”


The link towards an electronic version of the Human Trafficking policy paper can be found thus: