Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, October 8, 2020 – Today, the United States celebrated the completion and achievements of the Dignity and Rights program. This program, funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and implemented by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Kazakhstan, focused on combating the international scourge of trafficking in persons and on promoting migrants’ rights. During the closeout event government agencies, NGOs, and other partners discussed achievements, lessons learned, and best practices to protect the rights of migrants and trafficking survivors.
In close partnership with the Government of Kazakhstan, the U.S. Government has been working on combating human trafficking since 2001. Over the past five years, USAID’s Dignity and Rights program reached more than 165,000 people by raising awareness about human trafficking and the rights of migrants. The program also trained 730 government officials, nongovernmental organizations (NGO), and students on human rights, ethical recruitment and ways of combating trafficking in persons.
Most importantly, USAID provided rehabilitation and reintegration to almost 700 trafficking survivors and vulnerable migrants through its NGO partners. More than 1,000 people were linked with services to protect their rights, including services available through government agencies. During its implementation, USAID’s Dignity and Rights program worked on creating opportunities for civil society’s participation in monitoring and promoting changes to national legislation in regards to migrants’ rights and facilitating their implementation through a series of annual national dialogues that were co-hosted by IOM and the President of Kazakhstan’s Commission on Human Rights.
Since 2001, USAID has invested more than $20 million to raise awareness about human trafficking and to provide assistance to trafficking survivors. USAID continues human anti-trafficking work in Kazakhstan through its Safe Migration in Central Asia program that works on combating trafficking-in-persons by empowering survivors, working with community leaders and officials to improve data and policies, influencing social norms that increase trafficking risks, and establishing systems and services that protect at-risk groups.
USAID is a leading international development agency and is a catalyst for achieving sustainable development. For more information, visit the USAID Central Asia website: https://www.usaid.gov/central-asia-regional and Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/USAIDCentralAsia.