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The Economist Intelligence Unit releases “Out of the shadows” global index on child sexual exploitation

The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has launched a 40 country bench-marking index Out of the shadows: Shining light on the response to child sexual abuse and exploitation. With support from World Childhood Foundation and Oak Foundation and the Carlson Family Foundation the index seeks to examine and rank country responses to child sexual exploitation and abuse with 20 additional countries to be added in 2019.

Specifically the index looks at four key categories of criteria; context and environment in which child sexual exploitation occurs, the effectiveness of legal frameworks and responses and how they provide protections for children, whether government commitment and capacity actively strengthens institutional and individual responses and how the private sector, civil society and the media is engaged to end this crime. Countries are then assessed against these criteria under 34 indicators and 132 sub-indicators.

The initiative also assesses countries responses to child sexual exploitation in travel and tourism through indicators 4.2.1 and 4.2.2 for industry commitment to The Code (short of The Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children in Travel and Tourism). The Code has continued to welcome new member companies and Local Code Representatives, and now reaching more than 300 members operating in 150 countries around the world ranging from multinationals to small local operations. Major tourism companies have joined The Code, indicating increasing private sector actions to end sexual exploitation of children

The initiative has also utilized data from the Global Study to inform its findings and define its indicators. In line with the findings of the Global Study that found no country is immune from the sexual exploitation of children in travel and tourism, the Out of the shadows initiative highlights that sexual violence of children is happening across the globe regardless of a country’s economic success.

As a first of its kind research project, this initiative promises to bring the sexual exploitation and abuse of children out of the shadows and shine a light on how countries are responding, what is working and what more needs to be done. Governments, private sector, civil society and the media all have a role to play in ending the sexual exploitation of children, especially in travel and tourism.

Listen to the Out of the shadows launch webinar here.

Take a look at the data here.