Human trafficking is similar to a modern day slave trade; however, human trafficking is more problematic and encompasses more than just agricultural work. Sara Birkenthal, researcher and author of Human Trafficking: A Human Rights Abuse with Global Dimensions, defined human trafficking as “…the movement of persons within or across borders by any means (such as force or fraud) into forced labor, slavery, or servitude” (28). Humans can be trafficked for many different industries, such as commercial sex, construction work, domestic work, carpet weaving, agriculture and many other industries (Kara 1). Human trafficking is a worldwide problem, in which the victims are harmed the most, that needs to be taken seriously and needs to end. The Victim
More women and girls are trafficked than men and boys due to the international sex trafficking industry being a big contributor to the human trafficking industry. The victims of trafficking are harmed in many ways, although the biggest harm is the violation of their right to freedom. Victims of human trafficking endure a lot of sexual abuse, physical abuse, emotional abuse, and mental abuse. Victims are tricked into becoming victims by a false job offer, a fake marriage proposal, or, the most common, kidnapping. The traffickers have to condition the victims using different tactics like starvation, physical harm, sexual abuse, forced drug use, and harm to victims family (Birkenthal 28). Victims of trafficking are moved around a lot. They start in the country of origin, which is where they were forced into trafficking, then they move through transit countries, and finally into the destination country (Kara 2). There are some cases in which the country of origin acts as all three, origin, transit, and destination.
Victims have multiple stops on their journeys because they are resold and abused (Kara 2). Many victims are afraid to seek help because the trafficker may find out and punish them, as well as the fear of the government not doing anything to help the victims. The government recognized this and in the 1990s created the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 set up rules and guidelines to help protect the rights of the victim, to help the victim out of trafficking situations, and ways of punishing the trafficker (Wagner 1).
There are many countries that are involved in human trafficking, meaning that each continent is involved in trafficking. Each country involved in human trafficking has its own method of how to handle the victim and the trafficker. While each country is entitled to set up its own rules and regulations of how to handle each human trafficking case, the United Nations has set up a guideline for the countries to follow. In 1948 the United Nations wrote the Universal Declaration of Human Rights wherein article four states, “No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms,” and article five states, “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”
Therefore, the United Nations has prohibited the act of human trafficking and is protecting the victims of human trafficking and all other forms of abuse; however, every country is entitled to their own methods of protection and punishment in human trafficking cases. As stated before, the United States of America’s government set up the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 to help protect the rights of the victims. Many other countries have set up similar protection programs to help the victim feel as though he or she can seek help and know that the government or, most importantly, the trafficker will not punish him or her.
There are many organizations that were made to help end human trafficking, but the most well known organization is the Not For Sale organization. This organization states, “Not For Sale creates tools that engage business, government, and grassroots in order to incubate and grow social enterprises to benefit enslaved and vulnerable communities. Together, we can end slavery in our lifetime. (notforsalecampaign.org)”
Not For Sale started when David Batstone discovered a local restaurant had been trafficking women from India to help around the kitchen. This was made public when one of the women died due to a gas leak in the apartment she was forced to stay in by the restaurant owner and her trafficker. Batstone did not like this and learned more about it and about organizations that help try to stop human trafficking. Batstone decided he wanted to help end human trafficking so he created Not For Sale.
“Not For Sale combines technology, intellectual capital, abolitionist groups and a growing network of individuals like yourself – joined together to end slavery in our lifetime” (notforsalecampaign.org). This means that Not For Sale joins companies and other organizations against human trafficking to work together on a broader spectrum. Conclusion
Human trafficking has been an international problem for many years and has affected many people. The main person being affected by human trafficking is, of course, the victim. The victim endures a lot of physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and mental abuse. The victim is completely stripped of his or her right to freedom and can be used for many different industries such as prostitution, construction, restaurant, and much more. Many trafficking victims are lured into trafficking through false marriage proposals, false job opportunities, or are just kidnapped. The victim is often moved between many countries or just many cities to be resold. Victims of human trafficking are often afraid of seeking help because his or her trafficker had previously threatened him or her for more abuse if help is sought. Human trafficking is an international issue that affects almost every country. There are an estimated 2.5 million victims of human trafficking throughout the world.
Human trafficking is more prominent in areas where there is a lot of instability and poverty throughout the area. There are many different organizations or methods created to help end human trafficking and protect the victims. The United Nations made it a law that each country protects the rights of each human and made it illegal to enslave a person; however, each country is to set up its own rules and regulations on how to handle each human trafficking case. The United States made the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, which protects the rights of the victim and also sets up possible punishments for the trafficker. Human trafficking is a global problem that many organizations are trying to stop due to the pain and suffering it has caused people for many years.