Tackling Contemporary Forms of Slavery in the Tourism Industry
Jonathan Cloutier, Project Officer
Beacon of the Freed
Sexual exploitation is often hidden from the public eye; taking place behind the closed doors of hotels, motels, and short-term rental accommodation. Thus, the tourism industry, including accommodation providers and the transport sector, can indirectly facilitate sexual exploitation through the nature of their services.
Of the 58 objectives issued by the Special Commission on the Sexual Exploitation of Minors in Quebec, Canada, which was set up to determine the extent and nature of sexual exploitation of minors in the province, six pertain to the hotel industry. The hotel industry also has an obligation to report any situation involving the sexual exploitation of minors. This underscores the indispensable role of this industry in the prevention of human trafficking.
It is essential that workers in this sector are appropriately equipped and trained so that they are able to recognise potential exploitation, refer people to the appropriate resources, and do no harm, while remaining within the scope of their role as hoteliers. Moreover, awareness-raising and training efforts should not be limited to large cities as exploitation takes place everywhere, including in rural areas.
GLOW is a program by Beacon of the Freed that includes training, guidelines, good practices, tools and a lot more, all of which are designed to help the tourism industry ACT WITHOUT CAUSING HARM in the prevention of human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation.