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Senator Win Gatchalian is pushing anew for the institutionalization of a comprehensive “Human Trafficking Preventive Education Program” to protect the Filipino children and youth from the different forms of trafficking.

The chair of the Senate basic education committee earlier sounded the alarm on students holding a “Christmas sale” of lewd photos and videos for as low as P 150 to raise funds for distance learning expenses.

In Senate Bill 735 or “the Human Trafficking Preventive Education Program Act,” Gatchalian proposed a program that will orient the youth about the dangers of human trafficking’s various forms, including prostitution and pornography.

It also aims to inform the youth on services provided by government agencies and non-governmental organizations to aid and protect victims of human trafficking.

Gatchalian’s proposed preventive education program has a school-based component, which covers junior high schools, senior high schools, colleges and universities, and technical or vocational education programs.

The community-based component of the program, on the other hand, will be implemented at the barangay level.

“Dahil sa mga hamong dinulot ng pandemya, mas marami sa ating mga kabataan ngayon ang nanganganib na maging biktima ng online sexual abuse o cybersex trafficking,” Gatchalian said.

“Maliban sa pagpapaigting ng ating pagtugis sa mga kriminal, mahalagang hakbang na maturuan natin ang mga kabataan tungkol sa kanilang mga karapatan at sa mga panganib na dulot ng trafficking upang hindi sila mabiktima ng iba’t ibang uri ng pang-aabuso,” he said.

Prior to the pandemic, the United Nations Children’s Fund identified the Philippines as the global epicenter of the live stream sexual abuse trade.

The UN body also reported that eight out of 10 Filipino children are prone to online sexual abuse or bullying.

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