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As part of their online conference series, the Harvard Program on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery and the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation are joined by the U.N. Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT) in hosting a Web-based conference: “Best Practices to Combat Child Trafficking.” Bringing together a panel of experts from academia, policy, and non-governmental organizations, the conference was an opportunity to share their perspectives on best practices to combat the trafficking of children. Ms. Thatun represented UNICEF’s perspective on service provision to children; Mr. Davis shared insights into the role of private companies in combating trafficking; and, Mr. van de Glind highlighted viewpoints from major labor organizations.

Human trafficking is a crime that targets all vulnerable populations: indiscriminate of age, gender, religion, race, or nationality. Just like adults, children are trafficked into prostitution, forced labor, forced marriages, and other slavery-like conditions. As traffickers change their tactics, the challenges grow greater for those who seek to prevent child trafficking and provide rehabilitation services for children who have been trafficked. Therefore, effectively fighting child trafficking requires the knowledge, experience, and skills of anti-trafficking organizations to surpass those of the traffickers.

Anti-trafficking organizations and individuals globally have committed a special focus to the issue of child trafficking by working to clearly define the problem, conduct research, develop strategies, and carry out interventions. In order to be more effective in combating child trafficking, we need to share our accumulated knowledge, skills, and experience on a global platform.


  • Susu Thatun, Child Protection Specialist, Migration and Trafficking Child Protection Section, Program Division, UNICEF
  • Christopher Davis, International Campaigns Director, The Body Shop
  • Hans van de Glind, Senior Specialist and focal point for child trafficking, International Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour, International Labor Organization (ILO)

Moderator: Dr. Timothy McCarthy, Ph.D., Lecturer on History and Literature and on Public Policy, and Program Director, Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, Harvard Kennedy School

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