(Dec. 30, 2010) On December 21, 2010, the European Commissioner for Home Affairs launched a new website devoted to combating trafficking in human beings. According to a press release on the event,
[t]he website should become a one stop shop at EU level for practitioners and the public interested in knowing more about trafficking and how it is being addressed within the EU. The website will include national information pages of all EU Member States with factual information on legislation, action plans, coordination, prevention, assistance and support to victims, investigation and prosecution and international coordination. (Press Release, IP/10/1763, RAPID, New Website to Help Fight Human Trafficking (Dec. 21, 2010), http://europa.eu/rapid/pressReleasesAction.do?reference=IP/10/1763&f
At the press conference marking the launch, the Commissioner, Cecilia Malmström, appeared together with the newly appointed Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, Myria Vassiliadou. Malmström welcomed the vote in the European Parliament that had taken place on December 14 endorsing a proposal for a directive on human trafficking put forward by the European Commission in March 2010. She noted that it brought the EU “one step closer to more harmonised legislation” on human trafficking and that Vassiliadou's appointment as Anti-Trafficking Coordinator “will further strengthen our actions within this field.” (Id.)
Vassiliadou commented that she hoped the new website would help to raise awareness about human trafficking, “while also contributing to the cooperation and mutual understanding among law enforcement agencies, national authorities and others.” (Id.) The EU Anti-Trafficking website is http://ec.europa.eu/anti-trafficking; it has links to EU policy, legislation, projects, and publications on trafficking in human beings, among other topics.
The proposed directive on human trafficking obliges Member States of the European Union to take action on prosecution of criminals responsible for trafficking in human beings, protection of the victims, and prevention of trafficking offenses. Member States will have up to two years to comply with the new legislation after its formal adoption by the Council of the EU. The directive will replace current EU legislation on the subject, Framework Decision 2002/629/JHA, and will apply to all the Member States except Denmark and the United Kingdom. (Id.)