Every year an estimated 3 thousand people fall victim to sexual exploitation in the Netherlands, including 1,300 minors. “Shame and low self-esteem, in combination with a highly controlled environment for victims, make it difficult to escape the situation of exploitation. In addition, it is common that victims of sexual exploitation do not recognize themselves as such. With this initiative, we want to raise the awareness of people who can be confronted with situation of sexual exploitation in their work, and make sure they know what to do,” prosecutor Warner ten Kate said. “In this way, situations of exploitation can be broken and prevented.”
The hotel and holiday park training focuses on making employees aware of signals that could indicate sexual exploitation happening at their work place, such as more than usual requests for clean sheets or towels. It will also teach employees how to act in such situations. According to the Prosecutor, various representatives from the hotel industry already promised to use the certification program, “because they want to increase awareness among their employees and above all want to offer a safe environment to their visitors.”
The Dutch authorities plan to expand this campaign to cafes, clubs and restaurants, and to taxi companies next year. The campaign, called No Place for Sex Trafficking, was developed by the What The studio, in collaboration with Defense for Children, the Ministry of Justice and Security, and the Public Prosecution Service.