Reintegration of trafficked persons in Indonesia : a review of IOM’s Handbook on Service Mechanism for Witnesses and/or Victims of Trafficking in Persons in Indonesia

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Title: Reintegration of trafficked persons in Indonesia : a review of IOM’s Handbook on Service Mechanism for Witnesses and/or Victims of Trafficking in Persons in Indonesia
Author: Silver, Laura
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Valtiotieteellinen tiedekunta
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Social Sciences
Helsingfors universitet, Statsvetenskapliga fakulteten
Publisher: Helsingin yliopisto
Date: 2021
Language: eng
Thesis level: master's thesis
Degree program: Yhteiskunnallisen muutoksen maisteriohjelma
Master's Programme in Society and Change
Magisterprogrammet för samhälle i förändring
Specialisation: Kehitysmaatutkimus
Development Studies
Abstract: Tiivistelmä – Referat – Abstract Human trafficking is a complex issue that has close connections to other large societal and global issues such as contemporary slavery, inequalities and migration. Trafficking can be seen as a part of a larger scale exploitation of labor and migrants. The risk of being re-trafficked after a trafficking experience is higher and well executed reintegration can reduce this risk. However, the research into the reintegration and rehabilitation of trafficked persons is underrepresented in the current academic literature. This thesis takes a closer look at the assisted return programs and reintegration and rehabilitation of trafficked persons in Indonesia to determine how well the programs respond to the needs of trafficked persons when they return home. The work provides insights into the experiences of integration and rehabilitation after trafficking and brings forth some of the experiences of trafficked persons. The causalities behind trafficking are explored through the concept of vulnerabilities to highlight how different systems produce vulnerabilities and increase the risks of being trafficked. These same vulnerabilities are faced upon return as well with additional vulnerabilities (f.e. health and psychological issues) imposed on trafficked persons by their experience. Vulnerabilities of a person are constructed in multiple dimensions. In this thesis the vulnerabilities are framed firstly through the concepts of labor migration, globalization and capitalism and secondly through concepts of oppression, exploitation and dehumanization to highlight the complexities surrounding vulnerabilities and consequently trafficking and reintegration. Through reviewing existing literature on reintegration of trafficked persons, an online interview with the employees of Indonesian Migrant Workers Union (SBMI) and a questionnaire to previously trafficked persons on their needs, a framework for desirable reintegration was established. The framework was then used to analyze IOM Indonesia’s Handbook on Service Mechanisms for Witnesses and/or Victims of Trafficking in Persons in Indonesia to establish how well the programs in Indonesia answer the needs of trafficked persons. The results of the thesis highlight that the needs of trafficked persons upon return are multiple. People need to be presented with an opportunity to become self-sufficient economically and socially and their health needs (both physical and psychological) need to be met. Most common issues faced by the informants of this thesis were economic and psychological in nature, but other difficulties were common as well. The analysis of IOM Indonesia’s handbook provided a positive view of the reintegration and rehabilitation in Indonesia. The Handbook was comprehensive and all-encompassing. Furthermore, it encouraged to take each individual’s needs into consideration and adjust the programs to fit each person. All dimensions of reintegration are taken into account. The results of the questionnaire however indicated that the state response in prosecuting the perpetrators is not sufficient and many informants were left without a proper restitution and with a feeling of injustice. The programs provide great tools to combat different difficulties faced by trafficked persons and help to mitigate the risks and reduce vulnerabilities. However, there are larger societal and developmental complexities behind trafficking and vulnerabilities people face. Issues of poverty, oppression and inequality cannot be improved by the rehabilitation and reintegration programs. This would require larger shift in policy and the way we organize and think about our global world.
Subject: human trafficking
International Organization for Migration

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