Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) Meeting in Bongao, Tawi Tawi(NR 14-130 )

A meeting of the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) was held and presided by PSSUPT AGRIPINO G JAVIER Deputy Regional Director for Operation PRO ARMM on September 10, 2014 at Tawi-Tawi PPO, Bongao, Tawi-Tawi.

Issues and concerns were discussed on the growing number of incidents of Deportees and Trafficking-In-Person Victims in Bongao, Tawi Tawi.

One particular concern was the necessity of the PNP to conduct mug shots and profiling of the victims once they are rescued.

As members of IACAT, The Commission of Human Rights and The Department of Social Welfare and Development based in Bongao stressed that the right to privacy and welfare of the Deportees and TIP Victims must be considered. They said that the victims already undergone traumatic experience and are physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted from the rescue itself thus the necessity of mug shot is being questioned.

On the other hand, PSSUPT AGRIPINO G JAVIER thoroughly explained to the body that the PNP prioritizes the welfare of the victims and such procedures are not only for investigative matters but also as a tool to help their family to recognized and locate them as well.

“Law abiding citizens will not have any problems with the procedure and only those persons who have problems with the law will go against such procedure. We must also determine if there are persons being repeatedly rescued. ” PSSUPT JAVIER said.

Another coordinating meeting of IACAT is set to be held in Bongao, Tawi Tawi for the creation of a standard operating procedure in handling such incident.

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