Thailand fights human trafficking with an application on smartphones

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Experts in the field of combating human trafficking revealed that the application Amobile That was launched in Thailand to enhance the reporting of the risks of human trafficking may be hampered by a lack of confidence by government officials there, as the application was developed by the Mahanakorn University of Technology in Bangkok and the Ministry of Social Development and Human Security, which is the main government agency responsible for protecting and supporting victims of human trafficking.

According to the site TOI “We hope the application will be another tool that victims of trafficking and witnesses use to notify authorities of incidents or ask for help,” said Purametti Femulisi, permanent secretary of the ministry.

Last year, the US State Department criticized in its flagship annual report that ranked countries about their efforts to combat human trafficking, Thailand for not doing enough to tackle the problem, and Buramiti said the app, which had been available for download since June last year but was officially launched on Wednesday, was Developed in response to a different report on human trafficking issued by the United States in 2018.

This report recommended Thailand to increase the number of channels for victims to report the risks or incidents of human trafficking, said Rachaun Manilik, director of the Department of Anti-Human Trafficking in Thailand, which is under the supervision of the Ministry of Social Affairs: “Most users use the app to read information regarding victims rights, which are available In seven languages ​​it has been read 1,201 times“.

Perhaps about 87% of the 1807 human trafficking victims who were rescued in Thailand last year were migrants – mostly from Myanmar, Cambodia and Laos – according to government figures, and the ministry has plans to develop various versions of the application, and Rachawen said that regardless of the rights information contained in The app, it currently only uses Thai language and has been downloaded by 260 users over the past 6 months.

This lack of languages ​​and trust in the government are the two main reasons why the application is not being used more widely, she said: “Most victims of human trafficking are afraid of government officials, and if this application is run by the government, it is likely that They are very afraid to use it“.

A 2019 UN study found that migrants mostly use their mobile phones, often finding rights-related information or support services from their peers.

“Harnessing social networks to promote these applications appears to be the best way to ensure their widespread use,” said Rebecca Napier, ILO’s technical officer for the program.“.

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