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New ICAO publication (Cir 357)

Cir 357, Guidelines for Reporting Trafficking in Persons by Flight and Cabin Crew, 2021.


ICAO worked in collaboration with OHCHR to develop the present reporting guidance, Guidelines for Reporting Trafficking in Persons by Flight and Cabin Crew (Circular 357). This circular is intended to assist States, their law enforcement authorities and operators in managing crew reports of suspected cases of trafficking in persons in aviation. These guidelines should be used in conjunction with Circular 352, which can be found on the ICAO website at www.icao.int/cabinsafety.


This circular emphasizes the need for appropriate reporting by cabin crew of suspected cases of trafficking in persons. The gathering and analysis of crew reports help law enforcement authorities and operators gather intelligence on trafficking in persons. Cabin crew members and other employees should be encouraged to take action to help stop this crime. To encourage continued reporting, States, their law enforcement authorities and operators should reassure personnel that their efforts to identify and report suspected cases of trafficking in persons will be reviewed and taken seriously, even if the person submitting the report is not aware of what actions, if any, are ultimately taken. A joint effort on the part of the State and the operator is needed to maintain open communication and to allow for statistical analysis and other intelligence to emerge periodically, in relation to trafficking in persons in aviation.


Effective implementation of these guidelines is a gradual process, requiring collaboration between States, their law enforcement authorities and operators. Factors that may affect the implementation timeline include the size and complexity of a State’s aviation system and the maturity of its safety oversight capabilities.


The reporting process set out in this circular is aligned with ICAO provisions related to safety management. Operators are encouraged use the safety management process that they have in place to collect, analyse and provide feedback to their employees as part of a safety management system (SMS). Reports on suspected cases of trafficking in persons should be managed under the operator’s SMS. The State should consider including reports of suspected cases of trafficking in persons as part of its mandatory safety reporting system, to encourage and collect reports from its operators.