In Cambodia, IJM Trainings Build Police Capacity, Promote Structural Change

IJM’s investigations team has been providing training courses for international police departments since 2003 as part of its efforts to build capacity in local justice systems. In Cambodia, IJM’s investigations team has just concluded a training course for 25 members of Cambodia’s Anti-Human Trafficking and Juvenile Protection Department.

The Cambodia training series focuses on equipping officers in their work to prevent and combat human trafficking.

IJM’s investigations staff, along with local officials who have taken IJM’s Instructor Training Certification Course, have provided police training in eight countries since the inception of the program. These trainings are an important element of IJM’s work to promote structural change by equipping local authorities to effectively respond to violent oppression and protect vulnerable members of their communities.

The Cambodia training series focuses on training officers in their work to prevent and combat human trafficking. Training participants begin by attending classroom sessions on the fundamentals of law enforcement, in which topics range from professional ethics to courtroom preparation. Students also engage in practical exercises, which involve demonstration and practice of various law enforcement techniques, as well as participate in investigations of violations of Cambodia’s anti-trafficking laws.

This most recent training session included a module on interviewing child witnesses, in which several non-victim youth participated as volunteer interview subjects. The practical exercises gave the youth an opportunity to develop a rapport with the police officers, as well as provided a critical opportunity for the police to put interview techniques to practice with minors – a key skill for minimizing trauma in the aftermath of abuse that many police officers around the world do not have the opportunity to practice outside of actual casework.

Since 2003, 279 Cambodian National Police officers have participated in at least one training course offered by IJM. IJM’s investigations team will continue in its efforts to equip local police departments in Cambodia and around the world to ensure that the poor can rely on the protections of the law in their communities.