What is the issue about ?
Human trafficking is a global issue and one of the world’s most dastardly
crimes, touching the lives of millions of people around the globe and cheating them of their own dignity. Traffickers betray women, men, and children from all around the world and push them into illegal situations almost every single day. Forced against their own will and dragged into a cruel, ghastly, gruesome society which becomes their everyday normal, struggling to fight back because of the huge repercussions faced from their traffickers which are essentially their owners.While the most common scheme of human trafficking is essentially for the purpose of sexual exploitation, hundreds of thousands of victims are trafficked for the purposes of involuntary labor, domestic servitude, child begging or the removal of human body parts such as their own organs, traded and sold in the black market.There are various reasons for the growing rate at which human trafficking is happening in our society. Some of these reasons are poverty, lack of education, Bedia tribe – brainwashed to believe they are sex workers, and various other reasons but I have only listed a few. Everyone in our society is so numb to the horrors that are going on in our world, not even fully aware of this issue. According to some estimates, approximately 80% of trafficking involves sexual exploitation, and 19% involves labor exploitation. Approximately there are 20 to 30 million slaves in the world today.According to the U.S. State Department, 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders every year, of which 80% are female and half are children. It’s horrific to understand that all these people who are being trafficked, are not only adults but people of all ages including teens and children. Human trafficking is the third largest international crime industry (behind illegal drugs and arms trafficking). It reportedly gains a profit of $32 billion every year. Of that number, $15.5 billion is made in industrialized countries. The International Labour Organization estimates that women and girls represent the largest share of forced labor victims with 11.4 million trafficked victims (55%) compared to 9.5 million (45%) men.Information from the U.S. Department of state, in the year 2010 there were more than 12 million victims of human trafficking worldwide.There are many spatial patterns regarding human trafficking on a global extent .It is vital to free the source and destination countries as a result, about half of the trafficking victims worldwide are trafficked within the same country, consequently, most of the countries I am targeting on are a mixture of all regions.Given the nature of human trafficking itself, there are many consequences undisclosed, hard to see from our perspective. victims who are being trafficked often don’t have access to basic life necessities such as food, safety, hygiene, sleep and essential medical care. The effects of trafficking alter depending on the nature and the specific situation. Given the nature of the crime, victims of trafficking can be exposed physical, physiological and social impacts. Many experience hard physical impacts due to excessive work, or the violence and strength traffickers show towards their victims. In extension to this victims can be exposed to serious and life threating health risks such as mental health issues, and deadly diseases such HIV/AIDS. Many of these mental health issues that come along with the abuse is anxiety,fear,insecurity and trauma.Various studies indicate high levels of PTSD because of the traumatic abuse experienced from the traffickers themselves. The long-term effects traffickers have on victims vary depending on the person but many experience memory loss, cognitive impairment, depression and in many cases suicide.Depending on the severity of the situations no matter what traffickers are still going to deliver these serious implications faced by their victims.Minors taken away from their homes and families dragged into human trafficking are much more vulnerable due to their age. Children’s brains start developing at a very young age and various different things can affect the way children think and how they communicate. children brought into trafficking can experience emotional pain, physical pain and this overall affects their psychological development.Being taken away from absolutely everything and brought into this trade means that for victims their so-called reality is much different to what they may have experienced in the past. victims are often isolated from their social circles, not able to engage socially or reach out for help due to the psychological damage that traffickers have caused. Some victims are literally taken away from everything they know, trafficked across international borders. thus meaning that the victims trafficked internationally feel incapable to engage due to lack of language barriers and/or geographic and cultural similarity. on the other hand victims specifically trafficked for sex have explained facing stigma and other negative responses during and after their trafficking experience, especially from friends and family members. According to the United States, government-sponsored research project (2006) approximately 800,000 people are trafficked across borders globally at any one time. This does not, of course, include those who are trafficked internally and whose numbers may be equally as large or greater.The non-government organisation (NGO) Free the Slaves estimates that 27 million slaves exist in the world today. According to them, more than 1.3 million people are enslaved in Latin America and the Caribbean, nearly 1 million in Africa and the Middle East, and 24 million in Asia.The ILO estimates that globally USD 31.7 million profits are generated annually from the exploitation of trafficked persons, half of which (USD 15.5 million) is generated in industrialised countries.No region or country in the world is deemed to be immune from human trafficking but South Asia, Southeast Asia, and Eastern/ Southern Europe are considered ‘epicentres’ of human trafficking.
Recent events have arisen in Haiti, resulting from a 7.0 earthquake. Haiti has already encountered extreme poverty and hardships, making the travesty even harder and greater to deal with for the country as a whole. haiti also has serious issues regarding human trafficking, especially for children called “restaveks”, forced into domestic labor generally experiencing extreme abuse and neglect.
the devastation caused by natural disasters also significantly contributes to this issue. for example, hurricane Katrina to the 2004 tsunami and even the cyclone in Myanmar devastate the lives of many causing unbelievable damage to the lives of many. unfortunately, this devastation caused by natural disasters shocks the lives of those most vulnerable leaving them alone and prone to abuse and exploitation. the united nations climate change conference explained that it is very hard to predict the duration of the consequences caused by climate change. due to the severity of the issue happening at a growing rate every single day, we should expect a lot more flooding, droughts and an expansion of extreme weather. all of these factors will essentially negatively crush the lives of many in very intense ways.
Sex trafficking is the larget and definitely the most popular form of exploitation for women with over 65% of women being trafficked into the commercial sex trade according to Human Trafficking Statistics.. Victims dont just include woman however people of all ages, including children with just over 1 million children sexually exploited every year according to Human Trafficking Statistics. Sex trafficking is growing rapidly because the amount of potential victims seems never-ending. Women and children are regualary targeted because they are utmost vulnerable people in society. In various developing countries, women essentially to not have the option or even opportunity for education and work. There is beliefs in society that women are basically useless, only used for the purpose of carrying children and marriage is still outstanding in today’s society . Due to this unmarried women or woman who are no longer virgins are looked at as nothing better than something that can be used endlessely. Factors such as poverty, military conflict and economic globalization all add to the convenciece of potential slaves. There are various impacts of these factors that contribute to the supply of sex workers. this becomes obvious when examining the dominant regions of sex trafficking. Sex trafficking is almost everywhere worldwide, but the dominant regions appeared in the 1990’s with South Asia, Central and Eastern Europe and East Asia being the epicentres of sexual explotation.
prositution in the netherlands is one of the easiest jobs to get, however one of the hardest to leave. there are various different reasons why these certain woman choose the line of work they do, an independent research organization found that only 2% of the woman enjoy the work they do, only 4% like the attention they get, 53% are not able to do any other work because of visa/residency restirctions, 61% say that they dont see an alternative and over 75% dont even speak dutch. many of the woman working in amsterdams red light district are forced into this occupation.in this case its difficult to say how many but estimates vary between 10-90%. some organisations state that virtually no woman get into prostitution voluntarilly. about 6750 people are working in prostitution in amsterdam alone on a yearly basis. therefore even if only 10% are forced into this work that would still be almost 700 people. besides human trafficking, many of the woman working in prostitution have to deal with other injustices,such as different forms of explotation and both psyical and mental abuse. between 80-95% were sexually abused some point in their life before choosing prostituion as there carrier path. in the netherlands about 25,000-30,000 woman work in prositution on a yearly basis. an estimated 92% of the woman are foriegners,primarily from romania, hungary, bulgaria and south america. economic vunerability, mainly a lack of job opportunites in these origin countries is widely recongized as the main reason for explotation. this goes for both men and woman who work voluntairly and women who are forced against there own will to work. they often feel ashamed,experience high levels of stress which leads to health problems, run a high risk of catching STD’s and might even become pregnant and will be forced to have an abortion. 68% of woman who work in prostition have experienced post traumatic stress disorder.
PART B: Explain how people’s values and perceptions of the issue have led to their response
Human trafficking is complicated, but can be commonly explained by “Push and Pull Factors.” possible trafficking victims are “pushed” into certain situations for various reasons ive explained for factors which include poverty, lack of employment opportunities which therfore results from a absence of education. Trafficking victims accept offers of foreign employment to gain money which they previously would have struggeled to earn in their origin countries. some of these carrers that fraqulent traffickers offer are childcare or restaurant. yet these victims are dragged into a cruel society only to discover themselves forced against their own will into prostitution under distatouros conditions and in unsual surrondings and even different countries where they find it difficult to communicate with others due to the language barriers present .Victims’ dragged into this have their own passprts and identification papers stolen and taken away from them by traffickers , then are told that they have to pay off a fradulent debt of thousands of dollars just too reedem their own identies back. Due to intense poverty in particular countries, parents are even enthusatic to selling their daughters when meeting “agents”. promising beneficial carrers in restaurants or bars. distressed victims and also their families are “pulled” into trafficking, decived into believing the lies of traffickers in hope of the expectation that a daughter will be able to support the family.
The political, social, and economic development that is taking place in our society in the destenation regions also creates human trafficking opportunities. the avaliblity of ope national borders and accessibility to air travel is also a factor which increases sex tourism. the development of the Internet and how fast technology has advanced throughout the year has also had quite a significant impact causing an increasing rate at which human trafficking is happening in society, the sex industry, and also child pornography help provide more accessible choices for commercial sex with trafficked victims . Technology and globalization not only creates huge local connections and networks, however also provides international connectionsas well.
Asian girls are very suceptible to trafficking due to their vunerabiltiy and also their traditional Asian cultural and social values. Filial piety a tradition in asain culture otherwise known as obeying parents and supporting the family in affiliation with social and predejuce attitudes and the outlook of females and children being viewed as less than men and in some cenarios reffered to as property to be sold or bargained with, almost like an item in a shop waiting to be sold. this therefore creates situations where females are very vunerable are susceptible to trafficking. Given the intesity of poverty and the traditional cultural beliefs , girls and their families may be easily betrayed into beliveing they are gaining employment with faulse assumptions that they will be able to earn enough money to support their families. Hence why this is such a big issue in this particular culutre.Woman are fooled then bought, sold, and trafficked across international borders as sex workers. In some cenarios , girls have been removed from prostitution, this then gives them the feeling of mixed emotions due to cultural factors explained. They may not agree or even like the carrer that has been chosen for them, but they feel they will financially fail the family. A Thai woman stated the filial piety concept: “repaying the breast milk” or otherwise known as todtan bunkhun.
The cultural mark of disgrace related to rape and prostitution. this brings along with it the feeling shame and loss of face to their own families, is another factor. As many girls are abandoned and ignored by their families and communities, thus why the factor of returning home and re- assoating themselves with their families and communities may not even be an option for many Asian girls. A Vietnam girl has described feeling shame and degradtation of prostitution and rape: “Someone ate out of my bowl and left it dirty.” Traffickers even recognize the fact that even if the girls breakout from prostitution, there is absolutey nowhere that these woman go to pursue help, leaving Asian girls in a helpless situations.In particular cultures there is the tradition whereby the middle child is sent to live and work in an urban area with a relative (e.g., Uncle/Auntie) in exchange for a promise of education and learning a trade.
Aware of this tradition, traffickers may pose as employment agents and trick parents into parting with their children, and who are then trafficked into the sex industry. Another contributing factor to the trafficking of Asian girls is the Western stereotype of Asian females as being subservience, obedient, hard working, submissive, passive, docile, shy, demure, softly spoken, eager to please, exotic — the china doll, Suzy Wong, and geisha syndrome contribute to the demand for Asian girls trafficked into the sex industry. These stereotypical views of Asian women have developed not only into an entire marriage industry driven by the growing demands for Asian women mail order brides in Western countries, but more insidious is the trafficking and the sexual exploitation of Asian girls.
VIETNAM | CHINA
When Ping was 12 years old, an acquaintance offered her and a friend jobs in a different city in Vietnam. Ping and her friend accepted the offer. The recruiter took them to a local bus station and placed them on a bus with their “caretaker.” When they disembarked, the caretaker revealed they were in China and had been sold into prostitution with 20 other girls. When one of the girls refused to do as she was told, the owners beat her severely. Ping suffered in the brothel for almost a year before authorities raided the establishment, rescued the girls, and returned them to Vietnam. Although Ping still suffers from headaches and poor vision—including moments of blindness—as a result of her exploitation, she is training for a career in hairdressing.
HUNGARY | UNITED STATES
Michael was looking for jobs on the internet when he met Lorant, who offered him the chance to earn a lot of money working as a male escort in the United States. Michael and several other men accepted the offer, left Hungary, and traveled to Florida, where Lorant instead forced them into prostitution for 18-20 hours each day without pay. Lorant forced eight men to stay in a one-bedroom apartment, confiscated their identity documents, and threatened to kill them if they asked to leave. Police discovered the trafficking scheme after neighbors reported unusual behavior outside the men’s living quarters. Lorant was convicted of human trafficking and racketeering and sentenced to 11 years in prison.
PART C: Propose a suitable course of action and provide a justification
human trafficking is a type of illicit trade in humans which is carried out globally for the purpose of sexual slavery or exploitation and forced labor. it is one of the most booming busineses and fastest growing criminal enterprise around the world. the most affected population is woman and children and the global community is charged with the responsibilty of responding urgentely to issues related to human trafficking. a number of approaches can be utilized by the international community to curb the problem of human trafficking.
the most important approaches include the human rights approach, enhanced research into the problem of human trafficking, encoruaging international judicial and police cooperation as well as the community integration in the fight against human trafficking and providing support and assistance to victims of human trafficking( International Organization for Migration,2008). one of the approaches that can help mitigate human trafficking is the human rights approach where the root causes of human trafficking such as patriarchal structures and gender based violence needs to be brought into the limelight.
these elements have been shown to favour several incidents of human trafficking particually among woman. polices and legislations on equal opportunites can help stregthen and protect the social and legal position of children and woman and adress gender and age discrimination. support programes should be stepped up to streghten efforts of fighting poverty and marginalization among vunerable populations such as the young girls and woman.
the global community should be keen not to confuse the fight against human trafficking with the fight against illicilt immigration as there is need to scrutinize ways of increasing gainful, non-exploitative and legal migration of labour for the purpose of globalization. education provison to vunerable groups and creation of campagins among the targeting victims can help reduce human trafficking. the global community can combat human trafficking by encouraging research which will provide sufficent data and form a starting point of tackling the problem.
extensive research will indicate the scale of human trafficking and the mechanisims of the explotations.information on human trafficking should be made availble and this information should be shared bilaterally and multilterally in order to facilate good research on regarding the problem. research on counter-trafficking responss will form a crucial component of combating human trafficking. this research will examine the reasons why clients of trafficked humans prefer thew trade and chekc ways on solving the clients requirments.
there should also be extensive research that will focus on the needs of the vunerable groups who mainly include woman and children. another approach that can be used by the global community to combat human trafficking is the judcial and police cooperation which include the fight of coruption, checking on the investigation mehtods, exchange and specialization measures and legislative recomendations. the law should always ensure that there is protection of the witnewsses and the victims, prohibit prostitue explotation, ban illegal work and regulate national territory residence so as to combat such trafficking.
there should be an introduction of adequate penalties into international and national legislations for such crimes that involve trafficking and other related offences. confidential and parallel investigation of the suspected traffickers’ financial affairs should be followed when idenitfying, sequestrating and conficating the assests and proceeds of the human traffickers ( UNGIFT,2009). these should be legal provisons which may include the financial insitutions taking the legal duty to disclose any suspected transaction of money laundering to the agencies of law enforcment.
however, the finacial insitution should not disclose any police enquries into the affairs of the suspects finances. the international community should ensure that states have legalisations to assure the victims the right to secure and seek compensations for the harm and the injuries they suffer during trafficking. additionally, there should be direct contact between the judicial authorities and effective service of law enforcment for the purpose of speeding up informatiom exchane in inesigation process and having mutual legal support (UNGIFT 2009).
The approach of victim assistance and protection can help combat human trafficking. there should be an establishment of sufficent study and research to identitfy the trafficked victim and the traffickers’ profiles. this may include the the design of key indicators of trafficking design matrix which can be used by the border personnel and the front-line police to assist them in distingusihing between the irregular migrant and the trafficked victims.
the victims have to be provided with acess to the support measures of all ranges such as shelter, sexual, psycholigical and psysical health and support and care. there should also be legal, social and independent health counselling to equip them with skills which will ensure that they aviod any futire human trafficking predisposing factors. ( United Nations Office on drugs and crime 2007). the global community can play a major role in combating incidents of human trafficking. this can be done by setting up rules and proving enabling enviroments that will discourage such crimes in our society.
the approaches which look into the needs of both the traffickers and the trafficked individuals tend to strike a balance between caring caring both the offend and the offender as both members of the community. several organizations such as Thorn and United Nations have so far invested efforts to fight human trafficking although the cases of the illgeal trade continuing to be reported.this calls for more integrated approach which will involve the community, the victims or even the criminals of human trafficking.