What role do social workers play in the supporting victims of human trafficking and smuggled migrants?

Oujda/Fes Morocco 13 September 2018 - Morocco is a source, transit, and destination country for trafficking in persons (TIP) and the smuggling of migrants (SOM). As the process of exploitation has a significant negative impact on a TIP victim and smuggled migrants' physical and psychological health, IOM, under the framework of the Global Action against Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants ( GLO.ACT) and in coordination with IOM's 'Promotion of the psychosocial services and assistance services to the migrants in Morocco' project, facilitated a series of three-day trainings on TIP for social workers from L'Entraide Nationale and civil society organizations (CSOs).

The first training took place in Oujda from 24 to 26 January 2018 and involved 25 social workers (14 women and 11 men), and the second training was held in Fes from 10 to 12 July 2018 involving 20 social workers (9 women and 11 men).

Morocco's first law to combat TIP was  adopted in 2016 and remains largley unknown to many governmental and non-governmental actors working in the fight against TIP. In terms of TIP prevention and combatting the crime, social workers can play a crucial role in identifying and referring victims of TIP. It is therefore imperative that social workers know and understand the elements of TIP in order to be able to correctly identify them as victims of TIP, and to better assist them.

The purpose of these trainings was to improve the participants understanding of the migratory phenomenon, to build the capacity of social workers at provincial level on the identification, assessment and protection of victims of TIP, and to build their understanding on the differences between TIP and SOM. The training sessions were highly interactive in nature and incorporated many best teaching practices, such as working through several real TIP and SOM case studies and working in small group settings.

Following the training, the majority of participants reported the need to replicate this training within their own organizational structures and recommended it to other units in their organization.


The Global Action to Prevent and Address Trafficking in Persons and the Smuggling of Migrants (GLO.ACT) is a four-year (2015-2019), €11 million joint initiative by the European Union (EU) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). The project is being implemented in partnership with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF). GLO.ACT aims to provide assistance to governmental authorities and civil society organizations across 13 strategically selected countries: Belarus, Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Kyrgyz Republic, Lao PDR, Mali, Morocco, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, South Africa, Ukraine.  GLO.ACT works with the 13 countries to plan and implement strategic national counter-trafficking and counter smuggling efforts through a prevention, protection, prosecution, and partnerships approach. It supports the development of more effective responses to trafficking and smuggling, including providing assistance to victims of trafficking and vulnerable migrants through the strengthening of identification, referral, and direct support mechanisms.

For more information please contact:

Mme. Zara Atbi, OIM Maroc, Tél: +212 (0) 537652881

email:  fatbi@iom.int

Or follow us on Twitter: @glo_act