MALAWI: Tier 2
The Government of Malawi does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking; however, it is making significant efforts to do so. The government demonstrated increasing efforts compared to the previous reporting period; therefore Malawi remained on Tier 2. The government demonstrated increasing efforts by prosecuting and convicting 26 traffickers and handed down sentences ranging from 12 to 21 years imprisonment. It identified 121 trafficking victims and coordinated with a foreign government to repatriate two women who were exploited abroad. The government launched its anti-trafficking fund intended for victim services. The government also launched a five-year anti-trafficking national action plan and continued to conduct awareness-raising activities. However, the government did not meet the minimum standards in several key areas. The government did not always employ a victim-centered approach in the courtroom and continued to lack systematic procedures for the proactive identification of victims and their referral to care. In November 2016, a United States District Court for the District of Maryland issued a default judgment awarding more than $1 million in damages to a domestic worker who sued her former employer, a Malawian diplomat, for human trafficking; the diplomat left the United States in 2012. The diplomat did not pay the outstanding judgment nor did the government report taking any action during the reporting period to hold the diplomat accountable. Despite launching the anti-trafficking fund, it did not provide adequate funding to NGOs, which took the primary responsibility for providing protective services to victims.