Use of the internet by paedophiles to abuse children will be a major issue at the upcoming Yokohama World Congress Against the Sexual and Commercial Exploitation of Children. (Dec. 17-20). But in Thailand, some people are turning the internet to their advantage in their fight against child abuse and exploitation. ILO Television takes us there to explain.
In cyberspace, the net of paedophilia has been cast further than ever before. Traffickers, using the internet, entangle innocent children in a web of sexual exploitation and the worst forms of child labor.
Prungchit Phanawathanawong, IPEC Coordinator
Many children have been working there in the the restaurant. Some people they don't know they work in the bar so in the (kalaukays?) that do bring them into the trade business or the commercial sector.
Use of the internet by paedophiles is a pressing issue against sexual exploitation of children. But the Mirror Arts Center in Chang Rai, Thailand sees the internet as an ally in its fight to protect children
Parisudha Sudhamongkala, Mirror Arts Center
Because the internet is a big tool and the best because we live far away. This place is difficult to reach and the internet is our window to the world. And we feel we can take advantage of it and use it to help our children.
Funded by the ILO's International Program to Eliminate Child Labor, IPEC, the Mirror Arts Center runs a website to sell local handicrafts and raise awareness about Thailand's hill tribes. Local children learn to use computers to their advantage, and not to be taken advantage of.
Miguel Schapira, ILO TV News
Many people think that the internet represents an invitation for child abuse, and they may be right but these activists here in the far flung hills of Chang Rai are telling us that the net could also be a formidable tool in the struggle against child labor.
Pin Boonpala, ILO expert on child labour
We should recognize that internet nowadays is such an effective way to communicate in the world, and I think it is important that we find a way to make the best use of it and in this case, as the project illustrates that they use internet to communicate the plights of the children so as the solution to the problem.
Harnessing the power of the internet for their children and their future.