Caraga anti-trafficking advocates converge in Surigao City

Surigao City — The CARAGA/Surigao del Norte Community Network on Anti-Trafficking recently met in Surigao City to review previous projects and accomplishments of the coalition.

Some 30 participants composed of government advocates, women’s groups, youth partners, trade unions and representatives from government agencies and local government units in Surigao del Norte and Province of Dinagat Islands attended the activity.

Gillian Katrina Dupa, Project Officer of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity (Solidarity Center) an organization that pushes for Anti-Trafficking in Person (ATIP) in the Philippines, updated the coalition members on their roles and responsibilities on the fight of the growing menace.

Dupa also presented the third phase of the program dubbed as “Strengthening the Enabling Environment to Improve Response to Trafficking in Persons and Related Cases (STEER),” an activity that is a follow-up initiative funded from a grant provided by the US Department of State, G/TIP (USDOS), that will build on earlier local and national initiatives in the fight against trafficking by strengthening the enabling environment and improving the implementation of the country’s anti-trafficking legislation.

With this development, the new project is now looking forward to enhance the capacity of government, NGOs and community-support groups of the province to generate reliable, on-the-ground information and maintain a centralized database on trafficking and related cases including their status.

Formed last 2004, the coalition has already spearheaded numerous capability building and IEC campaigns to present human and children trafficking cases not just in Surigao City but the whole of Caraga region as well. Furthermore, the coalition lobbied to some LGUs in passing some resolutions and ordinances to strengthen the government’s campaign against Trafficking in Person (TIP). (Fryan E. Abkilan, PIA-Surigao del Norte)

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