5th April, 2012 - Posted by Malia Everette - 1 Comment
Reality Tours has promoted meaningful travel since 1989. We know socially responsible tourism benefits the host economy and that the more local people benefit from tourism, the more likely it is that women receive these benefits. However, there are many negative impacts associated with mass tourism. Sex tourism is an egregious and growing trend that we have witnessed further exploiting and eroding the rights of women and children worldwide.
Because of this Reality Tours became a signatory to ECPAT’s Code of Conduct in 2010. Tour operators can make a positive difference and do a lot to educate our communities about this growing exploitative industry.
ECPAT International is a global network of organizations working together for the elimination of child trafficking, child prostitution and child pornography. The network is comprised of 81 groups in 74 countries around the world.
Since signing in 2010, Reality Tours has worked to train ourselves and train our partners and hosts. We’ve updated our materials to include this Code of Conduct, and proactively informed our travelers. This was an important, practical next step for us- especially after partnering with Not For Sale for the past 4 years on our advocacy delegations.
Bringing our public education efforts about global human trafficking back “home”, we’d like to share a new documentary released by ECPAT-USA and WITNESS that exposes the lack of adequate child sex trafficking laws in the US. “What I’ve Been Through Is Not Who I Am,” tells the story of Katrina, a formerly sexually exploited teen who was arrested many times. It was only after she accepted an offer of help from a safe haven that she was able to escape.
Please take a moment to learn how legislative reform measures and new approaches can shift our collective response from a punitive one to a restorative one. When you hear Katrina’s personal story you’ll understand that we are jailing children in the US, that there is no such “thing” as a child prostitute, and that it is time to change our system.
Meet the People
If you’re interested in exploring this issue, consider the transformational power of Reality Tours delegations on Human Trafficking. You’ll meet modern day abolitionists first hand and hear stories of struggle and triumph. Join us.
Posted on: April 5, 2012