The Anti-Human Trafficking Unit (AHTU) is a policy and administration unit within the Crime and Security Directorate of the Department of Justice and Equality. We have primary responsibility for:
- the coordination and development of the Government’s response to the problem of human trafficking.
- developing and maintaining structures and policies to ensure that the Irish Government complies with the international obligations in relation to human trafficking to which we are party and are the subject of international evaluation. Such obligations exist with the UN Office on Drugs and Crime, the Office of the EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, the Council of Europe's Group of Experts against Trafficking in Human Beings and the International Labour Organisation. We are also evaluated on an annual basis by the US Government's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons.
- collecting standardized, non-personalised, information in relation to suspected and potential victims of human trafficking from governmental and non-governmental stakeholders for use as an evidence base for policy development.
- coordinating and chairing Working Group meetings for information sharing and policy development. These include State service providers, NGOs, international organisations and other bodies with a role to play in countering human trafficking.
- developing awareness raising material and merchandise using the Blueblindfold logo which can be made available on request to AHTU_inbox@justice.ie. Requests for such materials generally come from education institutions and regional awareness raising groups. Online resources and information on human trafficking in Ireland is available at www.blueblindfold.gov.ie, and the Facebook page Anti-Human Trafficking Unit Ireland, both maintained by the AHTU.
- providing annual funding to organisations working in the area of human trafficking. A detailed breakdown of our funding is available under 'Funding'.
- The AHTU works with An Garda Síochána in fulfilment of the reporting requirements above, and in support of An Garda Síochána's role as the Competent Authority for identification of suspected victims of human trafficking.