World Vision Australia has today welcomed international recognition of projects that tackle modern day slavery in the Asia-Pacific region.
The aid and development organisation congratulated the Australian Government on its efforts to fight human trafficking following the release of the 2012 Trafficking in Person (TIP) Report in Washington D.C. yesterday.
The TIP report – released annually by the US State Department – ranks countries by their contribution to the global fight against trafficking. Australia has remained in the ranking’s top tier.
In particular, the report commended Australia for its continued funding of anti-trafficking projects in the Asia-Pacific region. World Vision Australia supports several such projects, including the AusAID initiative Project Childhood.
Project Childhood brings together the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), INTERPOL and World Vision Australia to address sexual exploitation of children in tourism. The project operates in Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam and takes a dual prevention and protection approach.
While largely positive, the TIP report also addressed areas where Australia could do more. These include reducing demand for forced labour, increasing victim support and improved coordination between government departments and the AFP.
“We’re delighted that there has been recognition of the long-standing innovative work that World Vision does in partnership with AusAID in the Asia-Pacific region to combat trafficking,” said Melissa Stewart. “However the report makes it clear that no country is doing enough to end trafficking and exploitation.”
“World Vision is right in the heart of communities affected by trafficking. Projects focus on prevention and protection of vulnerable people being exploited and advocate to inform policy on this complex issue.”
World Vision Australia has also congratulated Dr Anne Gallagher after the TIP Report recognised her contribution to the fight against human trafficking. Dr Gallagher is the first Australian recipient of the TIP Heroes award.
Media contact: Gabrielle Brophy – 0407 575 112