AN agreement to strengthen networking between implementing bodies to combat child trafficking was inked recently.
The agreement called for local government agencies and non-government organizations to adopt the Philippine Human Rights Standards to combat the problem on child trafficking in the city.
The creation of the memorandum of understanding was approved by the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT), a body, which is tasked to implement Republic Act 9208 of 2003, or the anti-human trafficking law. The law implements policies to eliminate any acts of trafficking involving children and women and protects the rights of the victim, such as rights to confidentiality, information, non-discrimination and to exercise survival and development.
“This MOU enables us to strengthen further our campaign against child trafficking and the protection of trafficked children,” says Dr. Marcelina Carpizo, the president of Philippine Against Child Trafficking (PACT).
PACT is a network of advocates belonging to non-government organizations, government and academe, among others. It was established in 2002.
The signing was attended by local government implementing agencies, like Department of Social Welfare and Development, Philippine National Police and NGOs.
The signing of agreement was part of the series of activities held to mark International Day Against Child Trafficking last December 12.
In line with the observance, members of the Western Mindanao State University’s Center for Peace and Development (WMSU CPD) spearheaded the first ever mobile theater which was held in four different schools in the city.
Dr. Carpizo, who is also the director of WMSU=CPD, said that through the mobile theater young audiences would get to learn the dangers of being illegally trafficked.
The story is based on a true to life episode of a 14-year old child who was sold by her mother in Malaysia and thereafter suffered a harrowing experience.
Dr. Carpizo said with the celebration theme “Children Speak Out, Help Find and Save Trafficked Children” focused on the involvement of the children in the movement to end child trafficking.
During the culmination program held at Plaza Pershing, Councilor Ma. Etherlinda M. Abarro appealed to the audience to be united with the government to fight illegal trafficking.