CHILDREN FOR SALE Local NGOs and the law against Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children and Adolescents in Costa Rica
Abstract: Commercial sexual exploitation of Children and Adolescents (CSEC) is an increasing problem all over the world and especially in developing countries with growing tourist industries. In these countries CSEC and Child Sex Tourism have become two often closely connected problems. In Costa Rica there are many NGOs and governmental institutions working with these problems through prevention, attention and penalisation, but the cases have not decreased during the last years. Ten years ago there were no laws directed against CSEC, but in 1999 a reform of law 7899 in the Penal Code was carried out, creating the law against commercial sexual exploitation of minors. This law generated a new legal framework where no such law had previously existed and changed the conditions for everyone working with CSEC. Within the Costa Rican society there are power structures that influence the combat against CSEC ? inequalities that exist between the government and the NGOs, tourists and locals, men and women as well as between the perpetrators and their victims. This thesis discusses the background to why the problems of CSEC exist in Costa Rica, what impact the law reform has had on the problems, the role of the local NGOs and the government in the fight against the problems and possible recommendations for the future.
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