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UBS: Justice, Hope and Liberty Initiative

Ending the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children in Bangladesh
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In this collaborative initiative with the United Bank of Switzerland (UBS), IJM is helping to build a comprehensive and scalable model to mobilize governments, communities and survivors to end the commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) in Bangladesh.


There is widespread abuse and exploitation of children in Bangladesh

The commercial sexual exploitation of children in Bangladesh is occurring across the nation in brothels, hotels and private homes. IJM’s initial investigation quickly revealed that children are trapped in vicious cycles of abuse, sometimes for decades, and many have never experienced a life of freedom and healing. Criminals experience impunity, allowing them to continue perpetrating the abuse without fear of consequence.

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Measurement and partnership for program implementation

In collaboration with IJM, The Freedom Fund, and Survivor Alliance, UBS is funding a rigorous and comprehensive initiative to transform the public justice system response to commercial sexual exploitation of children in Bangladesh. This collaborative program will include rescuing and protecting individual survivors and broadly equipping the government to own responsibility for eliminating CSEC entirely from the country.

This process begins with intensive baseline research and investigative work to determine the actual prevalence of the crime, as well as identifying local partner organizations to help implement programs on the ground.

Through the UBS partnership, IJM established a presence in Bangladesh and has begun building the capacity of police and judicial systems to identify cases of CSEC and hold criminals accountable. All these efforts are informed by the actual needs of survivors and are focused on ending impunity for those who exploit vulnerable people.

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Project Progress

The Bangladesh government has demonstrated willingness and interest at the highest levels of political leadership to address trafficking in the country. After establishing a presence and conducting the baseline survey, IJM’s interventions will deliver a comprehensive, scalable and portable model that can be taken to other countries and replicated across the region.

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