The 8th Manila International Dialogue on Human Trafficking
Manila, Philippines (December 13, 2022) – The Republic of the Philippines together with the ASEAN countries held the 8th Manila International Dialogue on Human Trafficking in Manila, Philippines. Philippines is the host country in this event in which Undersecretary-in-Charge of IACAT Nicholas Felix L. Ty led together with Officers from the National Oversight Committees, Task Forces on Trafficking in Persons of Southeast Asian Nations, parallel to the Philippines’ Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking and other 18 foreign governments that signed The Dialogue which was borne out of the Manila Declaration to Enhance International Cooperation to Combat Trafficking in Persons.
The Manila International Dialogue on Human Trafficking (The Dialogue) is a platform for ongoing discussions on human trafficking in which numerous local and international NGOs, governmental institutions, and foreign missions in the Philippines engage. A global community of practice dedicated to collaborative casework, knowledge creation, evidence-driven policy development and harmonisation, and program enhancement has emerged as a result of these discussions.
South East Asian nations could fulfill their obligations under the convention and support the established mechanisms for implementation by putting into effect the ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (ACTIP), as well as the ASEAN Plan of Action and other ASEAN Mechanisms and Workplans. In addition, the key to the success of The Dialogue was the creation of these three: Technical Working Groups (TWG), Seafarers and Fishers, Domestic Work and Tourist Work and lastly, the Online Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children. Each TWG is co-chaired by a Philippine Government Agency and a Foreign Government.
The Tourism Industry Board Foundation, Inc. (TIBFI), was also part of the said event and was represented by its Secretary, Ms. Lilibeth C. Aragon. The Tourism Industry is one of the most prone industries in these kinds of circumstances, TIBFI, a tripartite association made up of businesses, unions, and governmental organisations for the development of the nation's human resource capital for tourism. TIBFI stands to combat child sexual exploitation in contexts related to travel and tourism, give education, resources, and support the travel and tourism industry. Everyone under the Tourism Industry was eager to bring back the glory of tourism in the Philippines in which the pandemic greatly affected. Restoring the business and confidence in the industry is one of the goals of every organisation, as well as rekindling the interest of their lost tourism workers in returning, as they work to provide job security in the years ahead. Despite all of these, one’s life is all that matters– safety of workers, tourists and every human being should be the top priority as they rise up from the devastation caused by Covid-19.