Madagascar PM Unveils National Counter Trafficking Awareness Raising Campaign
GENEVA, Switzerland, July 31, 2015/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- On the occasion of the World Day against Trafficking in Persons (TiP) 2015 (on 30/7), the Government of Madagascar launched an IOM-backed national awareness raising campaign.
The launch in Antananarivo, led by Prime Minister Jean Ravelonarivo, was attended by senior officials from the President's Office, delegates from the National Coordination Office for the Fight against TiP, diplomats, UN agency representatives, as well as from the judiciary, civil society, the private sector and the general public.
The campaign consists of posters, T-shirts, billboards, brochures, television and radio spots and conveys a message of “Zero-tolerance” against TiP.
It focuses on the Malagasy values of solidarity and strong family ties, highlighting the fact that victims of trafficking can be anyone's close relative. It highlights different kinds of exploitation affecting Malagasy citizens and calls on people to speak out or seek assistance when confronted with possible cases of trafficking.
Prime Minister Ravelonarivo reiterated the commitment of his government to raise the awareness of Malagasy citizens about trafficking. “This is a fundamental pillar of our national response to TiP. We commit to strengthen and combine our forces for the victims, whose dignity has been stolen, to be protected, and to ensure that appropriate measures be taken for the repression and prosecution of the traffickers,” he said.
According to the U.S. State Department and the UN, Malagasy citizens are trafficked both internally and internationally. Children, trafficked internally and primarily from rural areas, are subjected to domestic servitude, prostitution, forced begging, and forced labor in the mining, fishing and agriculture sectors. Women and men, who are trafficked both within Madagascar and internationally, face labor and sexual exploitation.
The national campaign was co-developed by IOM with funding from USAID and the IOM Development Fund. It is part of a larger IOM intervention aiming at improving national coordination on human trafficking, particularly of women and children; achieving greater public awareness of the issue; strengthening protection for victims; and supporting coordination between Madagascar, destination and transit countries.