Human Trafficking

March 11, 2011
By , Maringouin, LA
What is Human Trafficking? Human trafficking is the illegal trade in human beings for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor: a modern-day form of slavery(Human Trafficking). They have different types of human trafficking, such as sex exploitation or forced labor. Sexual slavery is the organized coercion of unwilling people into different sexual practices. According to Human Trafficking, “The incidence of sexual slavery by country has been studied and tabulated by UNESCO, with the cooperation of various international agencies.” Sexual slavery may include single-owner sexual slavery, ritual slavery sometimes associated with traditional religious practices, slavery for primarily non-sexual purposes where sex is common, or forced prostitution. (Human Trafficking and Sex Exploitation). Sexual slavery is also argued by the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action relating to the women’s rights and that of the girl-child.
Commercial sexual exploitation of children constitutes a form of coercion and violence against children and amounts to forced labor and a contemporary form of slavery. The prostitution of children is a form of commercial sexual exploitation of children in which a child performs the services of prostitution, most often for the financial benefit of an adult. For example, in India, the federal police say that around 1.2 million children are believed to be involved in prostitution. A CBI statement said that studies and surveys sponsored by the ministry of women and child development estimated that about 40% of all India’s prostitutes are children. Child pornography (also known as child abuse images refers to images or films depicting sexually explicit activities involving a child; as such, child pornography is a visual record of child sexual abuse. Abuse of the child occurs during the sexual acts which are photographed in the production of child pornography, and the effects of the abuse on the child (and continuing into maturity) are compounded by the wide distribution and lasting availability of the photographs of the abuse.
Forced labor is a generic or collective term for those work relations, especially in modern or early modern history, in which people are employed against their will by the threat of destitution, detention, violence (including death), or other extreme hardship to themselves, or to members of their families. Many of these forms of work may be covered by the term forced labor, although the latter term tends to imply forms based on violence. Forced labor includes all forms of slavery, and related institutions such as debt slavery, serfdom, and labor cramps. The terms “forced prostitution” or “enforced prostitution” appear in international and humanitarian conventions but have been insufficiently understood and inconsistently applied. “Forced prostitution” generally refers to conditions of control over a person who is coerced by another to engage in sexual activity. For instance, the laws from Sweden, Norway and Iceland, where it is illegal to pay for sex, but not to be a prostitute define all forms of prostitution as inherently exploitative, and abusive, and reject the notion that prostitution can be “voluntary”.
In contrast, prostitution is a recognized profession in countries such as Netherlands and Germany. The best-known form of un-free labor/free labor is chattel slavery, in which individual workers are legally owned throughout their lives, and may be bought, sold or otherwise exchanged by owners, while never or rarely receiving any personal benefit from their labor. Slavery was common in many ancient societies, including ancient Greece, ancient Rome, ancient Israel, ancient China, classical Islamic states, as well as many societies in Africa and the Americas. Being sold into slavery was a common fate of populations conquered in wars. Perhaps the most prominent example of chattel slavery was the enslavement of many millions of black people in Africa, as well as their enforced transplantation to the Americas, Asia or Europe where their status as slaves was usually inherited by their descendants. Where is human trafficking located? Human trafficking is located Africa, Atlantic, Arab Barbary Coast, Coastwise, Spanish New World, Angola, Brazil, Britain and Ireland, British Virgin Islands, Canada, China, India, Iran, Japan, Libya, Mauritania, Ottoman empire, Portugal, Romania, Seychelles, Sudan, Sweden, and United States.
Throughout this research I have learned abundant information about human trafficking. Human trafficking has caused tragic all around the world. More than 2/3 of sex trafficked children suffer additional abuse at the hands of their traffickers. Trafficked children are significantly more likely to develop mental health problems, abuse substances, engage in prostitution as adults, and either commit or be victimized by violent crimes later in life. Women who have been trafficked for the purpose of sexual exploitation experience a significantly higher rate of HIV and other STDs, tuberculosis, and permanent damage to their reproductive systems. There is only one shelter in the U.S. designed specifically to meet the needs of trafficking victims, and it currently only houses a total of seven to nine victims.

Trafficking victims normally don’t get help because they think that they or their families will be hurt by their traffickers, or that they will be deported. Trafficking primarily involves exploitation which comes in many forms, including: forcing victims into prostitution, subjecting victims to slavery or involuntary servitude, compelling victims to commit sex acts for the purpose of creating pornography, and misleading victims into debt bondage. According to some estimates, approximately 80% of trafficking involves sexual exploitation, and 19% involves labor exploitation. It is estimated that there are approximately 27 million slaves around the world. Between 2001 and 2005, 140 defendants have been convicted of human trafficking in the U.S., which is a 109% increase from 1996-2000. Around half of trafficking victims in the world are under the age of 18.

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