MPIWSC symbolically signed the Tourism Child-Protection Code of Conduct Agreement at their 2014 February Monthly Education Program entitled “Human Trafficking & How to Keep it Out of Your Events.” “Believe it or not, this is happening in our industry,” states on their Facebook Page. In response, MPIWSC brought in a panel of experts to educate members on how [human trafficking] affects venues, customers, events, attendees and the community. MPIWSC feels so strongly about this topic that they were the FIRST MPI chapter to sign “The Code”. MPIWSC formally became a member of the Code in January.
“As a chapter and leaders in our industry, it’s important for us to bring this awareness to the forefront of our community. We feel it’s our duty & obligation. It’s surprising how deeply this issue runs in our industry. It’s encouraging to know The Code exists and that we can be part of the solution by raising awareness in our community and helping to pave the way for others to adopt the same principles,” said Jeannette Davidson, Director of Sales, Geoteaming and President of Meeting Professionals International Washington State Chapter.
As an association signatory of the Code, MPIWSC will create a policy against child sexual exploitation, educate members on the issue, and report annually to ECPAT-USA. The more individuals that are educated in the travel and tourism industry, the less secure traffickers will be about running their illicit operations.
MPIWSC’s efforts as a member of the Code will contribute to ECPAT-USA’s mission to stop child slavery at the source. “Meeting Professionals International Washington State Chapter’s network will help to spread the word about the important roles for both travel buyers and suppliers in protecting children,” said Michelle Guelbart, Director of Private Sector Engagement at ECPAT-USA. “We hope their efforts will work as a multiplier, encouraging more companies to take a stand to protect children.”
To see the full press release about MPIWSC’s Code membership, click here.