Children feature most in media coverage on human trafficking

Kathmandu, December 4

Media monitoring of nine national dailies, including The Himalayan Times, and two magazines conducted by Alliance Against Trafficking in Women and Children in Nepal, between 14 April 2018 and 13 April 2019, shows that news on trafficking of people aged 0-17 made the most headlines.

Of the total reports on human trafficking, 50 per cent were about people in the age group 0-17 while 41 per cent of the reports were of the people between 18-29 age. “Higher number of cases of the age group, 0-14 shows that large number of children have been trafficked from the country,” said Bijay Paudel, journalist presenting the report today amidst an event held in the capital.

According to the report, there were 227 media coverage on human trafficking during the period. The media monitoring used 19 indicators such as numbers of news published, caste, age, gender, permanent residence of the victims of human trafficking, cause of human trafficking and date of news reported. The newspapers and magazines reported that 54 per cent of trafficking was cross border trafficking. It was also reported that twenty-six per cent of trafficking took place in the name of foreign employment.

The report revealed that higher number cases of women trafficking was reported (86 per cent) compared to males (14 per cent). “The number of male victims is low as men do not want to reveal their exploitation through human trafficking,” Paudel said.

From among females, the report said large number of girls and women from theTamang community were victims of human trafficking.

News monitoring also revealed that sexual exploitation was the main objective of trafficking (51 per cent) followed by labour exploitation (35 per cent).

The report also revealed that media violated the code of conduct by disclosing the names of the victims, their address along with parent’s names.

“The main objective of the study is to find out dynamics and situation of human trafficking and to study causes of human trafficking on the pretext of foreign employment,” said Benu Maya Gurung, executive director of AATWIN. “As the country is celebrating tourism year in 2020, we need to be aware about sexual exploitation and trafficking of children in the country,” she added.