MTV EXIT brings awareness on human trafficking through the power of music
MANILA, Philippines–Over 25,000 young people attended MTV EXIT’s (End Exploitation and Trafficking) Live in Manila concert at the SM Mall of Asia in Pasay City recently, which aims to gather people and use the power and influence of music to bring awareness on the issue of human trafficking in different parts of the world, and how it can be prevented just by knowing.
“Music is really an incredible force for change and this concert was a great way for people to come together and unite in the fight against trafficking,” said Matt Love, MTV EXIT’s campaign director.
Foreign artists who performed and pledged support for the fight against this modern-day slavery were Korean pop sensation Jay Park and Californian alternative rock band, Evaline, along with top local performers Parokya ni Edgar, Pupil, Ebe Dancel, and Itcyworms.
International singer-songwriter and anti-trafficking advocate Jason Mraz also made a special appearance and encouraged everyone in the Philippines to join him in the MTV EXIT anti-trafficking movement.
He said that if the world truly wants to achieve world peace, trafficking of humans have to end first.
Meanwhile, Vice President Jejomar Binay encouraged everyone to do their part in fighting this battle.
“The fight against human trafficking should not be done only by one person, but by everyone,” Binay said in his speech.
As defined by the United Nations, human trafficking is “the recruitment, transportation, and receipt of a person for sexual or economical exploitation by force, fraud, coercion, or deception in order to make a profit.”
UN estimates that at any one time, there are 2.5 million trafficked victims in the world, with the majority coming from Asia and the Pacific.
In the Philippines, MTV EXIT’s compiled set of facts on human trafficking says that there are about 300,000 to 400,000 women and 60,000 to 100,000 children being trafficked annually.
During the event’s launch held recently, Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said that perpetrators often preyed on the most vulnerable members of the society where men, women and children are poor and least educated.
“The vulnerability of victims of human trafficking is the result of the need to search for economic opportunity and greater security . . . the victims of this modern day slavery, most often than not, suffer from horrible physical and psychological and sexual abuse, making it impossible for them to see any future again,” de Lima said.
During the press launch, MTV EXIT also announced the airing of its newest half-hour Filipino documentary film “Enslaved: An MTV EXIT Special” on GMA News TV Channel 11 on November 27 at 9:55 p.m, to be hosted by Dingdong Dantes.
Dantes is the new ambassador of MTV EXIT in the Philippines.
He said that while poverty may be one of the major factors that put victims in a stage when they get vulnerable to fraudulent offers, “knowing is already half the battle.”
Dantes further said that that it breaks his heart knowing that these young victims, who had high hopes for themselves, get tricked and their dreams thrown in the trashcan.
“With MTV EXIT’s powerful communication platform, I am confident many Filipinos, especially the youth will be better armed to defend themselves against these vultures through education,” he said.
MTV EXIT is produced by the MTV EXIT Foundation in partnership with the US Agency for International Development, The Australian Government’s Agency for International Development, and the Philippines Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking.
MTV EXIT has now held 27 concerts across Asia over the past two and a half years, including events in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Nepal, Taiwan, the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Timor-Leste.
The concert will premier on GMA NEWS TV Channel 11 on Nov. 20 at 9:55 p.m.