Nearly 94 percent of Dubai residents have comprehensive or partial awareness of the concept of human trafficking, 4 per cent are not aware while 2 per cent have a different concept, according to a survey commissioned by Dubai Police on attitudes and awareness about human trafficking crimes.
The survey of 1,597 random samples of Dubai resident, which was carried out by Addaera Research and Poll Centre and commissioned by Dubai Police’s Centre of Human Trafficking Monitor and Control Centre, covered three categories of respondents: members of the public, public sector employees, and private sector employees.
Major General Abdul Quddus Al Obaidli, Assistant to the Dubai Police Commander-in-Chief for Quality and Excellence, affirmed Dubai's determination to take further security measures and actions to stop crimes related to human trafficking.
''A series of resolutions, measures and programmes will be introduced under the strategy of the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking,'' he added.
''The survey aimed at assessing results of efforts made by the government to combat human trafficking crimes since the Federal Law No. (51) of 2006 on Combating Human Trafficking Crimes was issued and the committee was set up in 2007,'' he indicated.
''The important findings and valuable recommendations of the survey will have a far-reaching impact on the development and improvement of mechanisms and tools for fighting this crime,'' he added.
In presenting the results of the survey, Hana Lootah, Executive Director of Addaera Research and Poll Centre, said 79 per cent of respondents have high awareness of the presence of anti-human trafficking laws in the country.
''Some 48 per cent of the members of the public are aware of the definition of the concept of human trafficking against 49 per cent and 41 per cent for those from the public sector and private sector, respectively,'' she noted.
With regards to the UAE’s efforts in combating the crime, she said 33 per cent said that they were fully aware of the efforts, 35 per cent said they were somewhat aware, while the remaining said they were unaware.
Interestingly, 68 per cent of the respondents said they received their information on human trafficking from the print and audio-visual media, while 47 per cent received it from awareness campaigns, lectures or workshops, and 24 per cent learnt about it from victims, she said.
The respondents stressed the need for strict penalties against traffickers with approval of 95 per cent, 96 per cent and 97 per cent by the members of the public, private sector employees and public sector employees, respectively.
The survey recommended the launch of extensive campaigns across the nation to raise public awareness about the crime and efforts to combat it.
Police personnel should undergo intensive training to build their capacities professionally and academically so as to be able to detect the crime.
The recommendations also included healthcare and support programmes to facilitate rehabilitation and re-integration of victims into the community so as to lead a safe life. Social partnerships with other stakeholders, particularly the health sector, should be bolstered and human trafficking laws should also be explained widely, especially at points of entry and exit.
Media should also play an effective, increasing role as a key source of information to raise public awareness and support anti-human trafficking efforts.