Travel and tourist operators : Don’t look away
mercredi 21 décembre 2016 à 04:00
Numerous studies demonstrate that sexual exploitation of children is an increasing global problem. Despite a variety of national and international laws, including the introduction of extra-territorial legislation, there are still men and women who sexually abuse children at home and abroad. While the travel sector is not directly responsible for the sexual exploitation of children, the sector has an indirect responsibility to make efforts to prevent it, as the industry’s channels and networks are knowingly or unknowingly used for criminal purposes. In addition, tourism professionals have unique opportunities to observe, increase awareness of and report on the commercial sexual exploitation of children, especially in developing countries that depend on growth in tourism for job and wealth creation.
The Code of Conduct
The Code of Conduct was created by the ECPAT network in collaboration with the WTO (World Tourism Organization) in 1996, as an international instrument to protect children from sexual exploitation in travel and tourism. The Code of Conduct has been managed by the tourism industry since 2004 and brings together responsible players in tourism worldwide. United Nations declares 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.
ECPAT Luxembourg asbl combats the sexual exploitation of children for commercial purposes. It supports prevention, rehabilitation and reintegration projects for vulnerable children and/or victims of sexual exploitation in various southern countries. Furthermore, the NGO ECPAT Luxembourg carries out awareness-raising campaigns in the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg in order to fight against sexual and commercial exploitation of children : www.ecpat.lu. To report sexual exploitation of children go on : www.childprotection.lu. ECPAT Luxembourg is the representative for the Code of Conduct in Luxembourg.
The mission of The Code is to provide awareness, tools and support to the tourism industry in order to prevent the sexual exploitation of children in contexts related to travel and tourism. In order to pursue its mission, The Code promotes the Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation in Travel and Tourism, which consists of the following six criteria for industry implementation :
- Establish an ethical policy against sexual exploitation of children.
- Train personnel.
- Introduce a Code-related clause in contracts with suppliers.
- Provide information to travelers.
- Provide information to key persons at the destination.
- Report annually to The Code on the initiatives undertaken.
ACCOR Hotels and LuxairGroup
By end-2015, 38 AccorHotels host countries had signed the Code. In 2014 Accor Luxembourg reinforces its fight against the sexual exploitation of children in the hospitality sector.
LuxairGroup reinforces its commitment to child protection by signing the Code of Conduct on 2nd of June 2016. LuxairGroup has supported ECPAT Luxembourg’s actions since 2009 and decided to become more actively involved in child protection alongside other tourism industry players in 2016. “By signing the Code, LuxairGroup is displaying its firm conviction that the tourism industry must take action alongside the governments and civil society to ensure that children are protected against any kind of exploitation,” commented Adrien Ney, President and Chief Executive Officer of LuxairGroup. The company will continue to work closely alongside ECPAT Luxembourg in order to implement the Code’s principles, as ECPAT has developed specific training courses and can help the company implement clear procedures for all staff members.
“No one can turn a blind eye to child exploitation and all staff members must know what to do if they are faced with this situation.”, assured Victor Gillen, President of ECPAT Luxembourg Board.
Stay connected to ECPAT Luxembourg and do not hesitate to act if you see that sexual child exploitation occurs in your travel and tourist destination.
Communiqué par ECPAT