January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month, and January 11 is Human Trafficking Awareness Day. As an international hotel brand committed to helping end human trafficking, the spotlight on this issue is important to us not only January but year-round.

In 2016 at the Global Business Travel Association conference,  Sonesta International Hotels Corporation declared its intent to join ECPAT-USA, a tourism initiative dedicated to the prevention of the trafficking of children. There we signed the Tourism Child-Protection Code of Conduct (“The Code”).

The Code’s mission is to increase awareness and provide tools and support to those who work in the tourism industry, all with the goal of preventing the sexual exploitation of children, a crime which affects more than 1.8 million young people annually, according to ECPAT.

Since signing The Code, our team has shown support for ECPAT by raising money for the organization and acknowledging days such as “Shine a Light on Slavery Day”.

On its website, ECPAT USA notes that “National Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month is a vital time to spread awareness and renew our dedication to ending all forms of exploitation in this country and beyond. For more than 25 years, ECPAT-USA has been leading the charge to prevent this crime before it happens.”

Learn more about ECPAT’s involvement with the travel industry to end human trafficking.