U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - New Zealand
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Author||Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons|
|Publication Date||3 June 2005|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State 2005 Trafficking in Persons Report - New Zealand, 3 June 2005, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4680d859b.html [accessed 17 September 2014]|
New Zealand (Tier 1)
New Zealand is a destination country for women trafficked from Thailand and other countries in Asia for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Some women smuggled into the country are subjected to commercial sexual exploitation to repay substantial debts to traffickers. New Zealand has a sizable number of children in prostitution, many of whom may be trafficking victims.
The Government of New Zealand fully complies with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking. The government should make a greater effort to prosecute trafficking offenses and raise public awareness of New Zealand's trafficking problem.
New Zealand's laws criminalize trafficking, slavery and child sexual exploitation. There were no convictions in the last year relating to transnational trafficking, but there were two convictions of brothel keepers for employing underage prostitutes under the Prostitution Reform Bill of 2003, which legalized prostitution in New Zealand and clamped down on trafficking of children for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation. There were seven convictions for offenses involving underage prostitutes. Penalties for trafficking crimes carry a maximum of 20 years' imprisonment and substantial fines. The law extends prosecution to any person receiving financial gain from an act involving children exploited as prostitutes, and it prohibits sex tourism. The New Zealand Government cooperated in the foreign prosecution of its citizens who committed child sex offenses in other countries.
During the reporting period, the New Zealand Government's protection efforts continued to meet minimum standards. The government supported NGOs including one that provided services to women in the commercial sex industry and some trafficking victims. The government provides physical protection, medical services, travel documents, and repatriation for victims. There were no reports of trafficking victims who had been jailed, fined or deported.
The government has programs geared to protecting children. To prevent exploitation of new immigrants and refugees, the New Zealand Government also has a number of campaigns to make them aware of their employment rights and human rights. The government in early 2005 approved a National Plan of Action on Trafficking in Persons. Although too new to verify its implementation, the plan establishes procedures for victim identification; provides victims access to specialized shelters; and provides awareness raising and training on trafficking.