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E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: PHUM, KTIP, ELAB, KCRM, SMIG, KFRD, KWMN, ASEC, PGOV, PREF KMCA, CA SUBJECT: Canada 2010 TIP Report
1. (SBU) CANADA'S TIP SITUATION
A. The Government of Canada collects trafficking in persons (TIP) information within Canada through a number of sources, including police and court-reported data, reported case law, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Human Trafficking National Coordination Centre (HTNCC). The 2009 Annual Criminal Intelligence Service Canada Report on Organized Crime provides a general assessment of human trafficking in Canada and is available online. The Department of Citizenship and Immigration (CIC) collects data on the issuance of Temporary Resident Permits to foreign nationals who are suspected victims of trafficking; not all of these cases go through the police or court system. Canada is finalizing a study on the feasibility of developing a national data collection framework, and expects to release the results in 2010. The study assessed data and information needs, examined the current capacity to track TIP data and information that is currently available and any subsequent data gaps, identified potential direct and indirect indicators, and highlighted the challenges that will need to be addressed regarding data collection and data sharing. During the reporting period, the National Missing Children's Services (NMCS) of the RCMP Canadian Police Centre for Missing and Exploited Children interviewed 175 police and service agencies in 20 Canadian cities and towns to determine the nature and scope of domestic trafficking of children under age 18. NMCS also trains police and recognized searching agencies in the investigation of missing, abducted, and runaway children. NMCS plans to expand this training to include information on the potential risks that such children face of being trafficked.
B. Canada is primarily a destination country for TIP. According to the government, Asia, in particular South Korea, China, Hong Kong (SAR), Taiwan, and Malaysia as well as Eastern European countries such as Romania, Ukraine, and Moldova are the primary sources for TIP victims for sexual exploitation in Canada. NGOs allege human trafficking for forced labor occurs across the country, with a higher number of cases in Alberta and Ontario provinces; however, they acknowledge the difficulty in gauging labor exploitation versus trafficking. According to the government, the majority of the human trafficking for forced labor investigations in Canada has been linked to foreign workers staffing industries for food processing, energy resources, technology as well as the service industry, including food retail chains and restaurants. Labor-related investigations also involve migrants from the Philippines, India, Poland, China, Ethiopia, and Mexico, with employers illegally transporting migrants and subsequently exploiting them as domestic helpers. None of the government investigations, however, determined that the level of exploitation rose to forced labor trafficking.
Both NGOs and the government report that trafficking for sexual exploitation is more prevalent than forced labor, specifically in the cities of Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto. The government identifies migrant women, new immigrants, at-risk youth, and those who are socially or economically challenged as vulnerable populations at risk of trafficking. While the government believes
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that organized crime is involved in human trafficking for sexual exploitation, it has not determined the extent of transnational criminal involvement.
NGOs rarely attempt to quantify independently the number of trafficking victims in Canada, although most quote an estimate of 2,000 people subject to trafficking into Canada annually. In 2004, the RCMP had estimated that traffickers brought approximately 600 - 800 persons into Canada annually and that they sent an additional 1,500 - 2,200 persons from Canada into the United States. The government no longer uses the 2004 estimates and the RCMP is conducting a national threat assessment to gauge the level of TIP activity across Canada. The RCMP plans to release the results of the assessment in early 2010. Trafficking victims have been foreign nationals, permanent residents, and Canadian citizens.
C. Reported case law confirms that victims face sexual exploitation within Canada in various venues. The majority of the victims believe that they will be working as waitresses, models, caregivers, or other legitimate occupations, only to find themselves in the sex trade under coercion. Control tactics to retain victims in exploitative situations include isolation from their social network, forcible confinement, withholding identification documents, imposing strict rules to control behavior, limitation of movement, as well as threats and violence. Complaints by foreign workers have commonly cited elements of deception, financial exploitation, harassment, and threats of deportation by their employer or by a third party agency.
D. The federal government identifies migrant women, new immigrants, at-risk youth, and those who are socially or economically disadvantaged as the most vulnerable TIP populations. All cases of TIP for sexual exploitation that law enforcement agencies across Canada have investigated, including those that did not result in TIP-specific charges, involved women or teenage girls or both. The majority of these cases included socially and economically disadvantaged women and girls. Cases of trafficking for forced labor under investigation by law enforcement agencies across Canada involve both adult male and female foreign workers.
NGOs and advocacy groups have drawn attention to the plight of aboriginal women and their vulnerability to trafficking. The Native Women's Association of Canada'(NWAC) has created education and awareness programs aimed at improving access to the judicial system for victims, while identifying the challenge of encouraging prosecutors to lay trafficking charges and secure convictions. NWAC is seeking to expand the definition of trafficking beyond prostitution to other forms of exploitation, including the use of aboriginal women as involuntary drug couriers. The government awarded C$5 million (US$4.7 million) to NWAC in 2005 for five years, but has not as yet renewed its funding commitment beyond 2010. NGOs further identify agricultural workers and domestic caregivers as highly vulnerable to trafficking.
E. According to the government, human trafficking for sexual exploitation is primarily associated with organized prostitution. Specifically, human trafficking occurs behind prostitution fronts, such as escort agencies and residential brothels. Suspects in human trafficking activities mostly operate with associates of
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similar ethnicity and have ethnic ties to the source countries of their migrant workers.
Government investigations show that organized crime networks with Eastern European links transported women from former Soviet states into Canada for employment in escort services in the Greater Toronto Area and possibly in massage and escort services in the Montreal area. These groups have demonstrated transnational capabilities and significant associations with convicted human traffickers in the Czech Republic, Germany, Belarus, and Israel. Government investigations indicate that criminal networks use agents in Eastern European source countries to facilitate the recruitment and transport of illegal sex workers into Canada. These individuals arrange local employment advertisements, initiate contact, facilitate travel documents, and coach potential victims to deceive Canadian immigration officials. Criminal networks trafficking Eastern European nationals to Canada for the sex industry likely have access to high quality fraudulent identification and travel documents, allowing migrants to travel undetected across multiple borders. Investigations have found that some Eastern European women who had been recruited to come to Canada to work illegally in the sex trade were exploited by traffickers. Major cities with Asian organized crime networks are also destinations for migrant sex workers from Asia. Some Asian women have come to Canada with legitimate employment offers, only to enter the sex trade under coercion by organized crime groups once in Canada.
Reported case law shows that some of the individuals convicted of trafficking offenses were affiliated with street gangs that are known to law enforcement for their "pimping" culture. Domestic human trafficking victims have mostly been recruited through the Internet, by an acquaintance, or directly by traffickers, who then coerced the victim to enter the sex trade. Victims of domestic human trafficking included underage girls who were exploited through prostitution in exotic dance clubs or escort services. Some traffickers provided fraudulent identification for their victims to feign legal age. With the exception of one case, all traffickers involved with Canadian girls and women within Canada were males. RCMP investigations have uncovered individuals or family units who control, threaten, and underpay foreign national domestic helpers, whose employers often smuggle them into Canada. The RCMP has not identified organized crime involvement in human trafficking for forced labor.
2. (SBU) SETTING THE SCENE FOR THE GOVERNMENT'S ANTI-TIP EFFORTS
A. Canada recognizes the serious nature of human trafficking, which disproportionately harms the most vulnerable members of societies, predominantly women and children. Canada remains committed to combating human trafficking domestically and abroad, and will continue to work closely with domestic and international partners to this end.
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B. The Interdepartmental Working Group on Trafficking in Persons (IWGTIP) coordinates federal anti-trafficking efforts. Chaired by the federal Departments of Justice and of Public Safety, IWGTIP brings together 17 federal departments and agencies and serves as a central repository of federal expertise. The province of British Columbia maintains offices dedicated solely to human trafficking; however, most provinces rely on a network of law enforcement agencies, court records, social service agencies, and NGOs to combat sex and labor trafficking. For example, the province of Alberta supports the Action Coalition on Human Trafficking (ACT Alberta), a TIP advocacy group and service provider to TIP victims.
The IWGTIP has representatives from the following federal departments/agencies:
A Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)
A The Department of Canadian Heritage (CH)
A Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
A Criminal Intelligence Service Canada (CISC)
A Department of Citizenship and Immigration (CIC)
A Department of Justice (Justice Canada)
A Department of National Defence (DND)
A Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT)
A Department of Health (Health Canada) / Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC)
A Department of Human Resources and Skills Development (HRSDC)
A Department of Indian and Northern Affairs (INAC)
A Passport Agency (under DFAIT)
A Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC)
A Department Public Safety (Public Safety Canada)
A Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)
A Statistics Agency (Statistics Canada)
A Status of Women Agency (SWC)
C. No systemic limitations hinder the government's ability to
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address TIP, and no evidence suggests any corrupt involvement by Canadian officials in TIP-related matters. Jurisdictional issues between federal and provincial or territorial governments hamper the ability of the federal government to have a detailed picture of the national scope of trafficking cases, investigations, and anti-TIP efforts. The government investigates and prosecutes any allegations of corruption in accordance with Canadian law.
D. The IWGTIP monitors all federal anti-trafficking efforts. The Minister of Citizenship, Immigration, and Multiculturalism presents an annual report to Parliament on the immigration activities and initiatives of CIC. CIC reports on the issuances of Temporary Resident Permits for victims of human trafficking in this report, which is available online. Justice Canada monitors TIP case law, and the HTNCC coordinates anti-trafficking law enforcement prevention and investigation efforts. The RCMP maintains statistics on TIP training/awareness for law enforcement agencies, government and non-government organizations as well as the public, and shares them with the IWGTIP, various government officials, and media outlets, as requested. NGOs, advocacy groups, and provincial offices also share law enforcements strategies, best practices, and successful cases studies with the law enforcement community and NGOs during conferences, RCMP human trafficking workshops, and regular meetings with the HTACs.
Internationally, Canada is an active participant at the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime. Canada participated in two open-ended intergovernmental working groups of the Conference of Parties, the implementation of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children.
E. Statistics Canada conducts a census every five years to count the population, including Canadian citizens (by birth and by naturalization), landed immigrants, and non-permanent residents together with family members living with them. The census questionnaires are in English, French, and 62 non-official languages, including aboriginal languages and Braille as well as on audio cassette. The census collects detailed information from all residents including population counts and demographic data, language, place of birth, place of birth of parents, generation status, citizenship, landed immigrant status, year of immigration, ethnic origin, aboriginal identity, visible minority population, population group (i.e. White, Chinese, South Asian, Black, Filipino, Latin American, Southeast Asian, Arab, West Asian, Korean, Japanese, Other - Specify), education, unpaid work, labor market activities, mobility, journey to work, income, families and households, housing, shelter costs, and disability. The census also collects the place of birth, place of birth of father, place of birth of mother, generation status, citizenship, landed immigrant status, and period of immigration of Canada's population.
Registration of births is a legal requirement in each province and territory. Provincial and territorial Vital Statistics Acts (or equivalent legislation) require the registration of all live
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births, stillbirths, deaths, and marriages within their jurisdictions. All provinces and territories maintain reports on the date and place of birth, child's sex, birth weight, and gestational age, parents' age, marital status and birthplace, mother's place of residence, and type of birth (single or multiple). Parents complete the registration of a live birth and file it with the local registrar. Most provinces also require physicians (or other birth attendants) to report all births.
F. The Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics (CCJS), in co-operation with the policing community, collects annual police-reported crime statistics through the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR2) Survey. The UCR2 survey data represent the number of criminal incidents of TIP that were detected or recorded by police within a calendar year. The Adult Criminal Court Survey (ACCS) is a national database of statistical information on the number of appearances, charges, and cases in adult criminal courts. The survey is intended to be a census of federal statute charges heard in provincial and superior criminal courts in Canada. These data are collected by the CCJS in collaboration with provincial and territorial government agencies responsible for adult criminal courts. Justice Canada also monitors TIP-related case law. Any issues that arise are explored in relevant Federal/ Provincial/Territorial fora. It is difficult to make linkages between police and court data. There is no single unit of count (e.g., incidents, offenses, charges, cases or persons) that is consistent across the major sectors of the justice system. In addition, the number and type of charges may change at the pre-court stage or during the court process. Time lags between the various stages of the justice process also make comparisons/linkages difficult.
Provinces and territories face several problems that limit local groups' abilities to combat human trafficking, including difficulty in maintaining collaboration between NGOs and local government, the lack of a lead TIP governmental office in many provinces, and the drain on police resources to support TIP victims to ensure a strong trafficking case. Few NGOs are able to assume such a large role. In Ontario province, the Peel Regional Police Service now refers many of its trafficking victims to an Ontario NGO that provides services, ranging from basic hygiene kits to job search and resettlement assistance.
NGOs cited lack of coordination between federal programs that admit temporary foreign workers to Canada and provincial government responsibility for regulating labor standards, arguing this creates conditions in which labor exploitation and potential labor trafficking can flourish. Provincial labor standards legislation regulates the employment of temporary foreign workers, but the rules of the temporary foreign worker programs are set by the federal government and are not coordinated with the provinces.
3. (SBU) INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION OF TRAFFICKERS
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A. Canada's criminal laws prohibit trafficking in persons for any exploitative purpose, regardless of whether the trafficking occurs wholly within Canada or whether it involves the bringing of persons into Canada. Criminal laws apply across Canada and therefore provide a uniform approach to address TIP and related conduct.
There have been no legislative changes to Canada's laws against trafficking since last year's report. Three TIP-related bills died upon the prorogation (temporary suspension) of Parliament in December 2009: Bill C-268, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (minimum sentence for offenses involving trafficking of persons under the age of eighteen years); Bill S-223, An Act to amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and to enact certain other measures in order to provide assistance and protection to victims of human trafficking; and, Bill C-45, An Act to amend the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act
The Criminal Code of Canada contains three specific indictable offenses to address trafficking in persons:
Section 279.01 criminalizes trafficking in persons by prohibiting anyone from engaging in specified acts for the purpose of exploiting or facilitating the exploitation of a person. This offense carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment where it involves kidnapping, aggravated assault or aggravated sexual assault, or death. A maximum penalty of 14 years applies in all other cases.
Section 279.04 specifies that a person exploits another person if s/he causes that person to provide, or offer to provide, labor or a service by engaging in conduct that, in all the circumstances, could reasonably be expected to cause the other person to believe that his/her safety or the safety of a person known to him/her would be threatened if s/he failed to provide, or offer to provide, the labor or service. Exploitation is also defined to mean causing a person, by means of deception or the use or threat of force or of any other form of coercion, to have an organ or tissue removed.
The second offense, section 279.02, prohibits anyone from receiving a financial or other material benefit resulting from the commission of a TIP offence. This offense is punishable by a maximum of ten years imprisonment.
Finally, section 279.03 prohibits the withholding or destroying of documents, such as identification or travel documents, for the purpose of committing or facilitating the commission of a TIP offence, and carries a maximum penalty of five years' imprisonment.
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These three offenses were enacted in 2005 (Bill C-49, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (trafficking in persons) S.C. 2005, c. 43). They supplement previously existing Criminal Code offenses that also are applicable to TIP cases, including kidnapping, forcible confinement, uttering threats, extortion, assault, sexual assault, prostitution-related offenses, and criminal organization offenses.
The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) also includes a TIP offense that applies to cases involving trafficking of persons into Canada (s.118). The offense carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and a fine of up to C$1 million (US$ 950,000).
In addition, the Criminal Code contains numerous provisions -- of the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT). Hewer expressed appreciation for the points related to the IAEA investigation of Syria's clandestine nuclear activities. He said that he was aware of DG Amano's report, and agreed on the importance of a strong message to Syria on the need for cooperation with the IAEA investigation. He said he would ensure that senior officials "upstairs" are briefed on the U.S. points.
3. (C/NF) Hewer said that Prime Minister Harper has made it clear that nonproliferation was a "major concern" for him and has made it one of the main themes for Canada's G-8 Presidency. Hewer lamented that most of DFAITs attention is focused on Iran, although the PM's concern was not Iran-specific. Hewer acknowledged that there was not yet an agreed Canadian position or language for a statement on Syria at the BOG. He said he expected to prevail in internal DFAIT consultations, in which he anticipated that the Middle East Division might resist strong statement language.
4. (C/NF) Hewer emphasized the need for solidarity at the BOG in order to send as strong a message to Damascus as possible. He mused that a joint statement issued by the like-minded IAEA members would be a strong sign of solidarity, although he acknowledged the practical difficulties in arriving at agreement on a text before the March 1 meeting.
5. (C/NF) With respect to Iran, Hewer said he was aware of the "blunt and direct" IAEA report on Tehran's nuclear program (ref b). Canada is fully supportive of U.S. efforts to secure a meaningful sanctions regime at the UN Security Council. In the event that results at the UN are unsatisfactory, Hewer promised that Canada would continue to consult closely with the U.S. on possible next steps. JACOBSON