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04TEGUCIGALPA2049 2004-09-14 15:30:00 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Tegucigalpa
Cable title:  

EVALUATION OF U.S. SPEAKER ON TRAFFICKING IN

Tags:   OIIP KPAO OEXC PHUM SMIG ELAB KCRM KWMN HO 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
					  					
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 TEGUCIGALPA 002049

SIPDIS

STATE FOR IIP/T/GIC (CLACOVEY); WHA/PDA (OHILTON)
STATE FOR G/TIP, INL/LP, AND DRL/PHD
STATE FOR WHA/PPC AND WHA/CEN
DOL FOR ILAB
DOJ FOR CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
EMBASSIES FOR PAO/CAO AND TIP OFFICER

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KPAO OEXC PHUM SMIG ELAB KCRM KWMN HO
SUBJECT: EVALUATION OF U.S. SPEAKER ON TRAFFICKING IN
PERSONS: MARIA JOSE T. FLETCHER, TRACKER NO. 21830

REF: Tegucigalpa 00926



A. Name of Speaker/Date of Program: Maria Jose T. Fletcher,
supervising attorney in the Florida Immigration Advocacy
Center (FIAC) and the director of LUCHA: A Women's Legal
Project, returned to Honduras August 18-21, 2004, for a
second series of seminars on trafficking in persons (TIP),
sponsored by the Office of the Honduran Delegate to the OAS
Inter-American Commission of Women (ICW).



B. Summary of Topics/Venues/Audiences: Post invited Dr.
Fletcher to return as the keynote speaker at the seminars on
"Prevention of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation and
Trafficking of Children and Adolescents in Honduras"
organized by the Office of the Honduran Delegate to the OAS
Inter-American Commission of Women, Ambassador Soledad de
Ramirez. The seminars were held at hotels in the northern
cities of Puerto Cortes, Central America's main port on the
Caribbean, and Tela, a mayor tourist area. Both cities are
vulnerable areas with relatively high levels of commercial
sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) and women.
Approximately 80 participants attended the seminar in each
city and included representatives from the local,
departmental and national government, the Honduran Congress,
NGOs working in this area, law enforcement, tourism sector,
civil society, and the media. PAS arranged several press
events for Dr. Fletcher before, during, and after the
seminars, which provided an opportunity for the Honduran
authorities and public to understand of the importance the
USG puts on fighting this transnational crime.

During her presentations, Dr. Fletcher discussed the
difference among illegal immigration, TIP, and alien
smuggling, and drew on her own experience in dealing with a
number of cases. She discussed how the U.S. system works,
from identifying the victims to protecting and treating them
to penalizing the criminals, always stressing the need for
networking among all players. Throughout her program, Dr.
Fletcher called attention to the need for Honduras to work
on stronger legislation and better implementation of the law
to control traffickers, as well as the need to better health
and education programs.

Dr. Fletcher noted that Honduras was named as a Tier Two
Watch List country in the Department of State's 2004 TIP
report, and therefore that it needs to take action sooner
rather than later to avoid sanctions. She encouraged
Honduran authorities, the private sector, NGOs, and the
press to address the issues pointed out in the TIP report
and to work together to produce positive changes. She
called for better application of the laws, networking with
the NGOs to identify and register places where CSEC takes
place, and the creation of databases to share information.

The Post distributed the section on Honduras of the 2004 TIP
Report, as well as a handout on generic mechanisms that
should be taken to effectively combat TIP, and other IIP
materials.



C. Effectiveness of Speaker: Dr. Fletcher is an
undisputable expert in her field who reaches her audience
with simple and concrete information on the tragedy of this
crime. Her day-to-day contact with the victims and deep
knowledge of the legal aspects of TIP, along with her
excellent bilingual skills and warm personality, connect her
immediately with her audience. She is a forceful speaker
who calls on her audience to overcome the obstacles that
prevent the different sectors from working together to fight
this abominable transnational crime.



D. Quality of IIP Support: Excellent. IIP/T/GIC Cindy
LaCovey fully supported the Post to secure Maria Jose
Fletcher for this program.



E. Results/Impact: Outstanding. TIP Speaker Maria Jose
Fletcher's program enabled the Post to continue raising
awareness among the Honduran audiences on the crime of TIP
and to encourage effective coordination between the public
and private sectors, civil society and the media on anti-TIP
efforts. Key GOH officials in the fight against TIP
remembered her fondly from her last visit and greatly valued
the opportunity to discuss TIP issues with her. Post works
closely with Ambassador Soledad de Ramirez to keep the TIP
issue on the agenda.

The program supported the MPP themes of Human Rights,
Illegal Drugs, Economic Development, Regional Stability and
Mutual Understanding. The program drew the attention of the
public and local authorities to the urgent need to combat
TIP.

Palmer