ECPAT Executive Director, Dorothy Rozga and ECPAT Deputy Executive Director of Programmes, Junita Upadhyay participated in the 4th South Asia Initiative to End Violence against Children (SAIEVAC) Ministerial Meeting held on 9-11 May 2016 in New Delhi, India. It was hosted by the Government of India, Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) in collaboration with SAIEVAC. H.E. Shri Rajnath Singh, the Hon’ble Home Minister of Government of India, was the Chief Guest of the Inaugural Ceremony of the Meeting. H.E Smt. Maneka Sanjay Gandhi, the Hon’ble Minister of MWCD presided over as the Chair of the Meeting with Hon’ble Secretary, Shri. V. Somasundaran as the Co-Chair of the Meeting.
The Meeting was attended by the SAIEVAC Ministers from Afghanistan, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Nepal (represented by the Secretary) and the Ministerial Statements of Pakistan and Bangladesh were delivered by their respective representatives. The Secretary General of SAARC was represented by the Bhutan Director of SAARC Secretariat. The goal of the meeting was to assess the South Asian situation in relation to the 10 years of Global Study on VAC, 10 years of SAIEVAC and 20 years of Global Congress on CSEC. Key highlights and findings from the Global Study, including overview and strategy of CSEC in the region were presented during the Technical Consultation preceding the Ministerial Meeting. This contributed to the endorsement of the following three recommendations directly related to CSEC, noting that there is urgent need to strengthen regional and national efforts to address the issue:
a) A regional strategy on addressing all forms of Sexual Abuse, Exploitation (including online) and Trafficking be developed, which also builds on the existing situations in the different Member States, that will guide SAIEVAC while developing the 2nd FYP;
b) SAIEVAC to initiate a process for setting regional standards and codes of conduct that safeguard children from commercial sexual abuse and exploitation in travel and tourism; and
c) SAIEVAC Regional and National mechanisms explore opportunities to mainstream and scale up efforts to address sexual exploitation and abuse of children including trafficking by tapping into potential opportunities for technical and financial support.
For the complete “Adopted Recommendations of the 4th SAIEVAC Ministerial Meeting” as prepared by the SAIEVAC Secretariat, please find it here.