Newspapers Ban Sex Ads in Mexico
Several of Mexico's largest newspapers have stopped running advertisements for sexual services in order to further the fight against human trafficking. El Universal and its tabloid, El Grafico, will no longer print advertisements that potentially facilitate the trafficking of women and children. The newspaper Reforma and its tabloid, Metro, are also doing the same.
In many instances the women and girls who provide the sexual services are forced into prostitution via false work promises or kidnapping. Newspaper directors have declared they have a social responsibility to combat the exploitation of women and children from criminal gangs. However, the newspapers are continuing to run advertisements for sexually explicit telephone conversations but the "escort" advertisements cease to exist.
In spite of recent news highlighting the trafficking problem, Mexico has already joined the Blue Heart Campaign and passed new legislation to combat human trafficking. Launched by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the Blue Heart Campaign seeks to raise awareness about modern-day slavery and prevent future incidents of human trafficking. Additionally, in July 2011 the Mexican constitution was amended; those accused of trafficking must remain imprisoned throughout the duration of the trial and victims are guaranteed anonymity.
UN.GIFT welcomes this initiative. "The media has a great role to play in the fight against human trafficking," said Siria Gastelum, Public Information Officer for UN.GIFT. "We hope that more newspapers around the world join the global fight against trafficking," said Gastelum.
Click here for more information of the media's role in the global movement against trafficking.
Click here for more information about the Blue Heart Campaign.