Countering Child Trafficking
Sarah Marr (PREM Group Human Resources Manager, Ireland and UK) and Ann Mara (Education Coordinator, MECPATHS)
PREM Group, who manage over 40 hotels across Europe, recently won the the Champion Corporate Social Responsibility Award at the HR Champion Awards hosted at The Guinness Storehouse, in partnership with William Fry. Their work with MECPATHS, an organisation founded to deliver Child Protection Efforts Against Sex Trafficking in partnership with The Hospitality Sector, received a standing ovation. Together they have been working since 2017 to design a bespoke staff education programme to raise awareness of child trafficking and sexual exploitation. This education programme was rolled out earlier this month to its 500 employees in Ireland and is currently tailoring it for use across its entire collection of hotels and serviced apartments in Belgium, the UK, France and the Netherlands.
Speaking on behalf of MECPATHS, Ann Mara, Education Coordinator says “We applaud their commitment to delivering life-changing, safer environments for some of the world’s most vulnerable individuals. As industry leaders in the hospitality sector, PREM has elevated the protection and safeguarding of vulnerable individuals as a core part of their mission. Their development of a mandatory staff training programme to help counter sex trafficking is truly commendable and an exemplary resource for other accommodation providers within Ireland and beyond”.
MECPATH Communication Coordinator, JP O’Sullivan also commented, “As leaders of change in Ireland, PREM Group have demonstrated what it is to be community-aware, active global citizens and models of modern advocacy. We look forward to supporting many other industry leaders to reach out in a similar way to ensure children are protected, globally.”
Miriam Gormally met with Ann Mara and JP O’Sullivan from MECPATHS and spoke to them about the award and how hotel staff can play a key role in the fight against this form of slavery, as their profession are amongst the most likely to encounter a victim of sex trafficking. JP began by explaining why the award was so significant.
For further information, MECPATHS can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or through their website www.mecpaths.ie.