European Policy Brief: The Role of Labour Inspections in Addressing Trafficking for Labour Exploitation

European Policy Brief: The Role of Labour Inspections in Addressing Trafficking for Labour Exploitation

As bodies tasked to monitor labour conditions and compliance with labour standards and to enforce the relevant labour, social security and other laws, labour inspection services – in principle – have an important role in addressing trafficking for labour exploitation. However, addressing trafficking for labour exploitation, or labour exploitation more widely, is not necessarily a core part of their mandate. In addition, monitoring is constrained by their limited resources and the continuous expansion of labour inspectorates’ mandates and tasks.
This European Policy Brief shows that labour inspectorates’ approaches to trafficking for labour exploitation vary considerably across countries and organisations. At the same time, outcomes in terms of prosecutions and convictions remain limited. However, the actual impact of labour inspections is difficult to assess. To date, most inspection services lack systematic evaluation mechanisms and, where they do exist, they rarely look into the effectiveness or impact of inspection activities. For a more detailed analysis, please consult the associated working paper here.