Presidential Task Force Against Human Trafficking – EXECUTIVE ORDER 548-A To efficiently address the increasing reports and cases of human trafficking.
It is necessary to enhance the coordination between and among agencies engaged in the anti-human trafficking drive. Thus, President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo created the Task Force Against Human Trafficking (TFHT) through Executive Order No. 548-A, under the supervision of the Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO).
However, the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) shall remain to be the primary body to coordinate, monitor and oversee the implementation of Republic Act 9208, also known as the “Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003”.
On the other hand, the CFO shall complement the functions of the IACAT, and in addition, shall be specifically tasked to conduct special operations such as surveillance of persons and entities suspected to be engaged in human trafficking.
The Task Force Against Human Trafficking (TFHT) was directed to:
* Recommend to Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) policies, programs and services to enhance government initiatives against trafficking in persons;
* Conduct surveillance and entrapment operations, in consultation and coordination with the IACAT established under Section 20 of Republic Act 9208, of persons, firms or entities alleged or suspected to be engaged in trafficking and related activities, as defined in RA 9208;
* Cause or direct the immediate apprehension, investigation and speedy prosecution of persons involved in, or of cases involving the trafficking in persons, and monitor progress of such cases;
* Provide adequate legal, psycho-social and other forms of assistance to trafficked persons, subject to rules and regulations as may be implemented;
* Consolidate various sources of data and statistics on trafficking, and establish a comprehensive databank for the effective monitoring, documentation and prosecution of trafficking incidents;
* Conduct a community education and information campaign program against trafficking in persons; and
* Perform such other acts as may be necessary for the effective discharge of its functions and responsibilities.
Commission on Filipinos Overseas
The Commission on Filipinos Overseas is the lead agency of the Task Force Against Human Trafficking (TFHT) supported by Department of Foreign Affairs, the Manila International Airport Authority, the National Bureau of Investigation, the Office of the Prosecutor of the Department of Justice, Philippine National Police, Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, Bureau of Immigration, and all other relevant government agencies.
The CFO Chairman may also call upon the heads of such government agencies for assistance, as may be necessary from time to time.