Group to educate public on human trafficking-A A +A
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
THE newly-organized advocacy unit of the Inter-Agency Council against Trafficking (Iacat) in Davao Region vowed to educate the public on human trafficking, starting from the grassroots level of the society.
Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Regional Director Francisco C. Jose, head of the advocacy unit of Iacat-Davao, said they recognize the need to educate the public on what is human trafficking, what are its forms, among others.
"It has to be executed. We need to actively educate the community down to the grassroots level, the students in schools at lahat na," Jose told Sun.Star Davao in an interview Tuesday at the sidelines of the Iacat advocacy cluster organizational conference and planning workshop at the DILG-Local Governance Resource Center conference room.
Jose said they are now stepping up the formulation of their cluster by starting with learning the legal basis, mapping out structures and functions of each member, and concreting its action plan for 2013.
Iacat network initially has two main units -- the law enforcement unit (LEU), headed by Regional prosecutor Antonio Arellano, and the psycho-social unit (PSU), headed by Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) regional director Priscilla Razon.
After its productive measures in prosecuting the perpetrators and protecting the victims, Arellano said the network has evolved and its functions are no longer limited only to quickly responding to trafficking in persons.
He said they have tapped the DILG to lead the advocacy unit that will put into action their advocacy programs and represent the prevention cluster to complete the 3Ps of the network.
"That's why our policy of bringing the campaign to the grassroots is important because it recognizes that in the end the most effective campaign must come from the grassroots," Arellano said.
Aside from the barangay leaders, Arellano said among the members of the advocacy unit is the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) and the Department of Education (DepEd).
Raul C. Alvarez Jr., acting director of Ched, said they propose to conduct summit and conferences about human trafficking in all the colleges and universities in the region.
"Everybody is prone to this," he said.
Alvarez said he plans to integrate the anti-trafficking education with the National Service Training Program (NSTP) subject.
"Sa NSTP kasi malawak yung area niya on social and civic awareness," he said.
In a separate interview, lawyer Renjie Bartolo, DepEd regional legal officer, said they will present the matter to the various Parents and Teachers Association (PTA), for wider information dissemination.
"Para yung mga teachers at parents na yung mag relay ng message sa mga bata," he said.
He said DepEd plays a vital role in the advocacy unit as most of the victims are minors, who are identified to be victims sue to their vulnerability.
Arellano said he is confident that the crime of human trafficking in the region will be prevented. (Arianne Caryl N. Casas)
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 13, 2013.