The human trafficking phenomenon affects virtually every country in the world. In East Africa, victims of human trafficking suffer physical and emotional abuse, rape, threats against themselves and their families and sometimes death. Although women and children have been identified as the main victims trafficked within and outside the region for mostly domestic servitude and sexual exploitation, young boys are increasingly being trafficked for purposes of forced labour in agriculture, fishing, mining and street begging.
Although Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania have in the last few years enacted relevant legislation against human trafficking, implementation of the law is still limited and fragmented. Additionally, the lack of institutionalized coordination efforts among partners in the region makes it difficult for partners to offer protective services to victims effectively. This handbook aims at providing partners in the region with a step by step procedure for assisting victims of trafficking. The guidelines were developed through a consultative process through a Regional Task Force comprising of government and civil society representatives from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda. These guidelines also benefit from provisions of existing international standards and policy frameworks as well as counter-trafficking legislation in the respective countries and can be used in other regions within Africa and beyond.