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Online Child Sexual Exploitation (OSEC) in the Philippines FACTSHEET

Updated: Feb 26

Arise began its work in the Philippines in 2015 and opened its office in Dagupan at the end of 2020. Since then, Arise has been growing its network, while listening and learning from local anti-slavery groups.

The prevalence of slavery and human trafficking in the Philippines is inextricable from broader issues of poverty, inequality and the remittance economy. Traffickers lure people in with the promise of an opportunity (a "job" overseas or an "education" in the city) that many victims cannot afford to refuse. Migration, remittances, rural-urban inequality and resulting recruitment agencies and movement of people are all aspects of the socio-economic fabric that traffickers leverage.

Traffickers create their own "opportunities" from contexts of scarcity, capitalising on others' vulnerability. 83% of cases of online child sexual exploitation in the Philippines are carried out by family members, indicating that poverty has embedded the issue of slavery in households and communities. Responding to slavery therefore requires a comprehensive and grassroots approach. It requires providing viable alternatives to high-risk groups,