The Saskatchewan government has introduced The Protection for Human Trafficking (Coerced Debts) Amendment Act to shield victims from the aftermath of coerced debts.
Justice Minister and Attorney General Bronwyn Eyre stressed the significance, stating, “This is about reducing dependency between victims and their traffickers, who often force victims to take out loans on their behalf and then prevent them from repaying them.” The legislation expressly prohibits lenders from reporting coerced debts in credit reports and considering them in loan evaluations.
Executive Director of The Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking, Julia Drydyk, commended Saskatchewan, noting, “The debts coerced upon human trafficking victims often create significant barriers as they rebuild their lives.” Drydyk urges close collaboration with survivor experts and agencies to empower survivors and diminish access barriers to support.
This legislation builds upon Saskatchewan’s proactive stance on human trafficking.
In 2022, The Protection from Human Trafficking Act empowered victims with protection orders and the ability to sue traffickers for compensation.
The government’s commitment extends with a $27.5 million investment in interpersonal violence supports and services, highlighting Saskatchewan’s dedication to combatting human trafficking and supporting survivors on their path to recovery.