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Private sector partnerships crucial in combating human trafficking, say webinar panelists

Panelists on a recent UN.GIFT webinar called public/private partnerships essential in the global movement to end human trafficking, and urged companies to adopt anti-trafficking measures into their corporate strategies.

 

Private businesses have become actively and effectively engaged in addressing and combating human trafficking as the anti-trafficking movement has grown. Due to the complexity of the crime of human trafficking, the role of the private sector has become increasingly vital. Panelists discussed the critical need to combine the knowledge, experience and skills of the private sector with public-sector organisations, in order to create effective and comprehensive strategies to combat trafficking.

 

"The global movement against human trafficking is one of the most vibrant social change arenas today…While the challenges are immense the energy and creativity committed to ending trafficking are immense and growing" said moderator Shawn MacDonald, Director of Programs and Research at Verité. "Grassroots groups are forming around the world to fight back against traffickers… Survivors are speaking out and increasingly leading these creative local groups. Consumers are more interested in where there purchases come from and how they are made. Governments are more mobilized…And the private sector is stepping up to take responsibility for their role -- whether it be through changing how they do businesses in order to prevent this exploitation or using their resources and skills to help communities directly effected by trafficking."

 

UN.GIFT organized the webinar in collaboration with Harvard Kennedy School's Program on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, and the UN Global Compact.

 

Over 125 people located around the world participated in the interactive session, which included panelists:

 

Claudia Arthur-Flatz, External Relations Officer and Private Sector Focal Point, Division for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, UN Office on Drugs and Crime

Ivana Machonova Schellongova, Senior Programme Manager, End Human Trafficking Now

Brenda Schultz, Director, Responsible Business, Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group

Karen Olcott, Principal, Partnerships for Global Impact

 

To hear the webinar in its entirety, click here.