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An Verlinden CEVI, Ghent University ESF Project Trafficking for forced labour in industries other than the sex industry across Europe 3 rd Workshop, Trinity.

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Presentation on theme: "An Verlinden CEVI, Ghent University ESF Project Trafficking for forced labour in industries other than the sex industry across Europe 3 rd Workshop, Trinity."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Verlinden CEVI, Ghent University ESF Project Trafficking for forced labour in industries other than the sex industry across Europe 3 rd Workshop, Trinity College Dublin February 2008 Irregular Migration Ethical-philosophical comments

2 Irregular migration – some numbers Total numbers of (estimated) irregular migrants: million worldwide (IOM 2000) million in the EU (Düvell 2006) (10 to 15% of the total migrant population) in Belgium (Vulsteke 2005) Inflow each year: 2 – 4,5 million worldwide (ICMPD 2004) to 1 million in the EU (IOM 2003, Eu. Comm. 2006)

3 Trafficking – some facts Total numbers of trafficked people At least 2.4 million worldwide (ILO 2008) Profile mainly women & children (1.2 million) Profits +/- US$ 31.6 billion each year (Belser 2005) Convictions a few thousands every year  Low risks - high returns

4 Trafficking & Irregular Migration (1)Economic crisis, underdevelopment, poverty, persecution, human rights violations, … in countries of origin (2)Migration Control Regime in Western Europe (3)Labour market competition, deregulation of labour standards, structural adjustments, 4D-Jobs  Rise in irregular migration, THB & forced labour

5 Focus on security & border controls Where are the victims? –The labour dimensions of trafficking (ILO 2007) : 12.3 million forced labour victims worldwide 2.4 million of them are trafficked 32% of all victims were trafficked into labour exploitation 34% were trafficked for sexual exploitation (mainly women & girls) 25% for a mixture of both –The human rights dimension Current Policies

6 1. Sovereignty versus human rights Are foreigners fellow men? 2. Practice versus law How to treat irregular migrants (victims of THB)? Normative dilemmas

7 Westphalian system of nation-states –Sovereignty – monopoly of violence – self-determination  Control on admission through immigration policy International human rights framework –UDHR (1948), ECHR (1950), Geneva Convention (1951), ICCPR (1966), ICESCR (1966), etc.  Protection of fundamental rights of international migrants  International obligations to irregular migrants/victims of THB Sovereignty versus human rights

8 Erosion state sovereignty? –Decreased influence of nation-states because of globalisation –EU policy: national interests prevail  Balancing human rights – social ‘achievements’  soft law  public order  knowledge of rights  labour market  access to legal assistance  social security Sovereignty versus human rights

9  State sovereignty & human rights –The Security dilemma State security or human security? –The Solidarity dilemma Humanitarianism or justice? Sovereignty versus human rights

10 1.The Security dilemma Security as state security  Emphasis on possible disruptive consequences of illegal immigration/THB  securitisation discourse Security as human security  Emphasis on physical integrity & personal freedom  human migration policy taking into account migrants’ needs Sovereignty versus human rights

11 2. The Solidarity dilemma Solidarity with irregular migrants out of humanitarianism  National community is normative foundation for societal participation & solidarity  Duty of humanitarian assistance towards irregular migrants Solidarity with irregular migrants out of global justice  Territorial boundaries are morally arbitrary  Duty of justice towards irregular migrants/victims of THB Sovereignty versus human rights

12 Law legal framework – macro-level (state)  citizens versus non-citizens Practice application/interpretation of the law – social practices within civil society contexts  the foreigner as fellow man Practice versus law

13  Legal framework & moral convictions –Effectiveness of policy and fieldwork Feasibility versus humaneness –Professional and moral duties The extent of duties towards irregular migrants/victims of THB Practice versus law

14 1.Different functionalities Policy framework abstract legal framework – illegality as crime – procedures – common good – feasibility  efficient & effective expulsion policy towards irregular migrants in view of legitimacy Social practice application of the law – problem-solving oriented – human contact – individual well-being – humaneness & desirability  real assistance out of humanitarianism Practice versus law

15 2. Professional and moral duties Professional duties  application of the law in one’s official capacity  rationality – rules Moral duties  out of concrete encounter with the other – moral appeal  conscience – duties Practice versus law

16 What is a crime from a strictly legal point of view can be aid or assistance from a social ethics point of view. And what can be justified in terms of a social or public ethics, can be fully immoral from an individual point of view. The immigration paradox

17 1.Holistic approach Minister/state secretary of Migration Interdepartmentality Multi-level governance Structural involvement & participation of migrant communities Some recommendations

18 2.Ethical commission & deontological charters Ethical commission on Immigration Independent Permanent Differentiated composition Tasks: 1.Systematic screening of alien law (juridical + ethical) 2.Mediation in sensitive cases (linked to accountability) Deontological charters for social workers Some recommendations

19 The immigration paradox in practice 1.How to shape our individual practices – as social worker, policy maker, academic, lobbyist, … – looked at it from the perspective of our collective responsibility towards irregular migrants/victims of THB? 2.Expulsion policy: tailpiece or collapse of an efficient and effective migration policy? Discussion

20 An Verlinden Center for Ethics and Value Inquiry (CEVI) Dept. of Philosophy & Moral Science, Ghent University +32 (0) – More Information


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