Association signs code to help end horror of child sex trafficking

PCMA, the Chicago-based Professional Convention Management Association, has pledged to help end the sexual exploitation of children perpetrated under the cloak of travel and tourism.

The association signed The Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation in Travel and Tourism, during its annual Convening Leaders conference, in Pittsburgh.

The code  – devised by policy body ECPAT-USA – provides guidelines for organisations in the business travel industry to help them eradicate the trafficking and exploitation of children.

The signing of The Code was overseen by PCMA Foundation Chair and President of Maritz Global Events, David Peckinpaugh, during the conference, taking place from January 6-9.

He said: “As an industry, currently worth over US$150 billion, we have the power of advocating and raising awareness of the human trafficking epidemic, and have a stronger voice for the vulnerable, whose opinions and opportunities have been taken away from them. Together with ECPAT-USA, we are committed to doing everything in our power to end human trafficking.”

Michelle Guelbart, director of private sector engagement at ECPAT-USA, said: “One of ECPAT-USA’s main focuses — and essential tools for ending child sex trafficking — is engagement with the private sector, including ensuring as many associates in the travel industry are educated about this urgent issue”, said “This new collaborative partnership with PCMA helps expand that mission to thousands more and will help protect countless more children from exploitation.”