MANILA - The Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) and International Justice Mission (IJM) signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on ProtectPortal, a data harmonization project that intends to bridge the gap on timely data reporting and response to trafficked victims. Through Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay-Villar and IJM's Regional Vice President for Global Program Against Online Sexual Exploitation of Children for the Asia Pacific Region, Atty. Samson Inocencio, the MOA was signed on February 14, 2022 at 2 o'clock in the afternoon via Zoom meeting.
Also present for the momentous event was IACAT's OIC-Executive Director, SASP Wendell P. Bendoval, who shared his positive insights regarding the MOA. Rosemarie Ayos-Lujero, IJM's Senior Lead, Criminal Justice System Monitoring and Evaluation followed with her presentation stating that, "a comprehensive, harmonized, and unduplicated data collection system and analysis of trafficking-in-persons across agencies is an important portal towards the development and effective implementation of timely and need-focused policies and programs in the Philippines." The MOA signing segment proper ensured.
IJM's Regional Vice President, Atty. Samson Inocencio, thanked all the people who made this project possible, saying,
ProtectPortal celebrates another milestone in the continuing work of child protection. We are honored to be partnering with IACAT and working with trust, excellence, and a shared commitment towards justice, creating a safe future that lasts for all Filipinos.
Undersecretary Aglipay-Villar gave her speech that afternoon.
With the continuation of our partnership through this agreement, I am thrilled that we will now be addressing the long-standing concerns and issues on the data collection, monitoring, and analysis through this data harmonization project.
Before the ceremonial signing ended, Assistant Secretary Nicolas Felix Ty said that this is a momentous event for both IJM and IACAT. He reiterated the importance of data harmonization between the agencies. "The database that will be created will be instrumental not only in ensuring that perpetrators get what they are due, that survivors are well taken care of, but more importantly, in providing vital information that will aid legislators and implementers of the law to better combat the menace that is human trafficking," Asec. Ty ended.