• Creation of a curriculum that equips future tourism workers with skills and knowledge to recognize and report potential cases of sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism (SECTT) and sensitization of 31 trainers on the topic
  • 5 schools took the Pledge #ProtectingChildrenInTourism: in this frame 919 were sensitized through communication and awareness actions, 26 staff members and 117 students completed The Code’s Elearning modules on preventing child sexual exploitation
  • 200 people sensitized during events on child protection

ASSET-H&C appointed Vice-Chair of Mekong Tourism Advisory Group (MeTAG) – Child Protection Expert Group

What we do

For several years, the network has been working on the issue of child exploitation along with ECPAT International and The Code—an initiative hosted by ECPAT International, dedicated to providing “awareness, tools and support to the tourism industry to prevent the sexual exploitation of children” .

As Chair and Vice-chair of the Mekong Tourism Advisory Group’s Taskforce on Child Protection, ECPAT International and ASSET-H&C actively collaborate on increasing resilience and driving sustainability through various activities to address child protection issues in the tourism industry in the Greater Mekong Subregion.

To help ASSET-H&C members equip students with knowledge to recognize the issue and take adequate measures when facing a SECTT situation, ASSET-H&C, in collaboration with ECPAT and The Code, has provided trainers two different training materials:

  • The Code’s E-learning modules on protecting children from sexual exploitation in travel and tourism
  • A Curriculum specially designed for face-to-face training for schools that prefer classroom-based delivery

These various resources were presented during a webinar, during which some members also took a pledge on protecting children (+ link to the article to be published on GT blog?) to create further awareness on the issue in their school community.

Why we act

Sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism is NOT another form of tourism, it is a CRIME and should be named as such.

Around the globe, travelling sex offenders utilize travel and tourism infrastructure to sexually exploit children, often taking advantage of the poverty, social exclusion, and vulnerability of their victims to commit their crimes.

Child sexual exploitation can have devastating long-term impacts on victims, especially if they do not receive appropriate immediate and ongoing support. These can include long-term psychological and physical trauma, health problems including HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, stigmatization as well as economic difficulties resulting from marginalization.

It can also harm families, communities, and significantly damage travel and tourism companies, destinations, and society as a whole.

As the industry evolves, it needs to ensure that measures for child protection are implemented.

Sexual exploitation of children is a threat to the tourism industry.

SECTT is a threat for the tourism industry itself as it entails numerous risks including:

  • Loss of guests or clients, as more people make socially responsible decisions while choosing destinations and companies
  • Being held financially or legally accountable for facilitating the sexual exploitation of a child
  • Risk to the guests or clients’ safety, as sexual exploitation of children can sometimes be associated with other criminal activities
  • Loss of trust of employees, associates, and partners, who want to work with responsible businesses

It is therefore essential for companies to not only have policies and procedures to prevent and respond to child sexual exploitation but also have staff properly trained to implement them.

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