Bogotá, April 29, 2022 - The third and final day of the Inter-American Forum on Combatting Human Trafficking in Bogotá, organized by Lawyers Without Borders Canada and Colombia’s Office of the Human Rights Ombudsman, with the support of Global Affairs Canada as part of the project "No Más Trata", concluded successfully.
The Forum was attended by survivors, civil society organizations, prosecutors, police officers, human rights ombudsmen and state institutions from 12 countries of the Americas participating in a horizontal and multilateral discussion. During the three days of the Forum, numerous meetings, breakfasts and working lunches were held where the need to fight without borders against human trafficking, a scourge that has no border, was reiterated.
Pascal Paradis, Executive Director of Lawyers Without Borders Canada, said:
International cooperation must support regional coordination and collaboration to address human trafficking with a focus on gender, human rights and intersectionality that leaves no one behind, including the most invisible victims, and aims to put an end to all forms of exploitation.
Carlos Camargo, Ombudsman of Colombia, said that
One of the tasks that I consider fundamental to prevent and counteract human trafficking is the articulation of concrete actions with civil society, international organizations or international cooperation, as in the case of the alliance with Lawyers Without Borders Canada, to implement the project "No Más Trata".
The participants were invited to sign a Declaration that outlines concrete commitments to continue collaboration and to sustain regional coordination in the Americas after the Forum. The first signatories were Carlos Camargo, Ombudsman of Colombia, Blanca Izaguirre, Ombudsman of Honduras, Eduardo Leblanc Jr., Ombudsman of Panama, and Pascal Paradis, Lawyers Without Borders Canada.
The Bogotá Declaration incorporates one of the main conclusions of the Forum, which is the positioning of victims at the centre of all strategies and actions for the fight against human trafficking and their participation in such strategies, including service delivery, care, comprehensive reparation and guarantees of non-repetition.