HUMAN TRAFFICKING

Image Source: fbi.gov

HUMAN TRAFFICKING MEANING:

Human Trafficking also means forcing a person into leaving their home to work for little or no payment. It is a form of modern day slavery. People are bought, sold and traded. It is often done by tricking or promising a better life to the victims as compared to the life they were leading. Some victims are lured by the promise of securing them jobs whereas some are even beaten, kidnapped, raped. This victims are the sufferers and are forced to enter prostitution whereas some are forcefully made to enter forced labour. The victims of this trafficking are rarely fed and no medical attention is given to them. They are also drugged when they deny to perform activities that they are forced to do. Generally, it is observed from the statistics that once trafficked, the victims find it difficult to return back to their homes as they are transported to other countries and their passports confiscated.[1]

HUMAN TRAFFICKING STATISTICS:

Global Report on Trafficking in Persons published by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) provides new information on a crime that shames us all. Based on data gathered from 155 countries, it offers the first global assessment of the scope of human trafficking and what is being done to fight it. It includes: an overview of trafficking patterns; legal steps taken in response; and country-specific information on reported cases of trafficking in persons, victims, and prosecutions.

According to the Report, the most common form of human trafficking (79%) is sexual exploitation. The victims of sexual exploitation are predominantly women and girls. Surprisingly, in 30% of the countries which provided information on the gender of traffickers, women make up the largest proportion of traffickers. In some parts of the world, women trafficking women is the norm.

The second most common form of human trafficking is forced labour (18%), although this may be a misrepresentation because forced labour is less frequently detected and reported than trafficking for sexual exploitation.

Worldwide, almost 20% of all trafficking victims are children. However, in some parts of Africa and the Mekong region, children are the majority (up to 100% in parts of West Africa).

Although trafficking seems to imply people moving across continents, most exploitation takes place close to home. Data show intra-regional and domestic trafficking are the major forms of trafficking in persons.

The United Nations Protocol against Trafficking in Persons – the foremost international agreement in this area – entered into force in 2003. The Report shows that in the past few years the number of Member States seriously implementing the Protocol has more than doubled (from 54 to 125 out of the 155 States covered). However, there are still many countries that lack the necessary legal instruments or political will.[2]

According to the report of ILO, in 2012, 21 million victims were trapped in modern day slavery, out of which 14.2 million were exploited for labour and 4.5 million were sexually exploited and 2.2 million were exploited in state imposed forced labour.[3]

Approximately 75-80% of human trafficking is for sex. There are more human slaves in the world today than ever before in history. There are an estimated 27 million adults and 13 million children around the world who are victims of human trafficking. Human trafficking not only involves sex and labor, but people are also trafficked for organ harvesting. A human trafficker can earn 20 times what he or she paid for a girl. Provided the girl was not physically brutalized to the point of ruining her beauty, the pimp could sell her again for a greater price because he had trained her and broken her spirit, which saves future buyers the hassle. A 2003 study in India found that, on average, a single sex slave earned her pimp at least 250,000 rupees a year .Although human trafficking is often a hidden crime and accurate statistics are difficult to obtain, researchers estimate that more than 80% of trafficking victims are female. Over 50% of human trafficking victims are children. Human trafficking is the only area of transnational crime in which women are significantly represented—as victims, as perpetrators, and as activists fighting this crime. Severe natural disasters have left millions homeless and impoverished, which has created desperate people easily exploited by human traffickers. After sex, the most common form of human trafficking is forced labor. Researchers argue that as the economic crisis deepens, the number of people trafficked for forced labor will increase. Sex traffickers use a variety of ways to “condition” their victims, including subjecting them to starvation, rape, gang rape, physical abuse, beating, confinement, threats of violence toward the victim and victim’s family, forced drug use, and shame. Family members will often sell children and other family members into slavery; the younger the victim, the more money the trafficker receives. For example, a 10-year-old named Gita was sold into a brothel by her aunt. The now 22-year-old recalls that when she refused to work, the older girls held her down and stuck a piece of cloth in her mouth so no one would hear her scream as she was raped by a customer. She would later contract HIV.Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing criminal enterprises because it holds relatively low risk with high profit potential. Criminal organizations are increasingly attracted to human trafficking because, unlike drugs, humans can be sold repeatedly.[4]

TYPES OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING:

Constantly it has been observed that trafficking of humans is of various types. According to U.S Department of State, some types of trafficking that the victims are made to enter are forced labour, sex trafficking, child labour, commercial sexual exploitation of children and child soldiers.[5]

Trafficking for forced labour:

Forced labour is work or service that is extorted from someone under the menace of any penalty and work or service that the person has not offered voluntarily. Types of forced labour include debt bondage, involuntary servitude, peonage and slavery.[6]

Trafficking in women for sexual exploitation:

This prevalent form of trafficking affects every region of the world. Victims are lured by promises of decent employment by leaving their homes in hope of better life. They are transported to the destination country where they are forced into sexual slavery in fear of inhumane conditions.[7]

Commercial sexual exploitation of children in tourism:

This crime has taken hold for many years in Asia, Africa, Central and South America.

Trafficking for tissue, cells and organs:

Trafficking in humans for the purpose of using their organs, particularly kidney, is a rapidly growing field of criminal activity.[8]

SOLUTION TO COMBAT HUMAN TRAFFICKING:

Talking about the victims position in India, the Government of India penalises trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation through the Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act (ITPA), with penalty of seven years of life imprisonment. India also prohibits bonded and forced labour through the Bonded Labour Abolition Act, the Child Labour Act, the Juvenile Justice Act. Indian authorities also use Sections 366 (A) and 372 of the Indian Penal Code, prohibiting kidnapping and selling minors into prostitution respectively, to arrest traffickers.[9]

States in India vary in their efforts to protect victims of trafficking. Central Government, for rehabilitation of the victims, plan and execute various incentives, but to the dismay of the victims, Government authorities do not proactively identify and rescue bonded labourers, and thus few victims receive this assistance.

A recent step taken by the Government is the formulation of the trafficking Victim’s Protection Act, 2000 but it is seen that inspite of the effort of the legislature the steps taken to combat trafficking is not enough. The question that keeps ringing in the mind of the victims of human trafficking is how to deal with this growing problem? This problem is not only being looked by the local governments or the global Governments but it has also become a matter of concern for both private and non-profit organizations.

Not only human trafficking effects the victim who fall prey to it but it is also bad for the community as a whole. Thus it is required to recognize the damage this act can cause to the community at large and thus finding ways to tackling it. To prevent human trafficking it is necessary to monitor human smuggling reports and it is also required to closely study the trend of human trafficking so that strategies for combating them can be framed. The best way to combat human trafficking is to work with global communities hand in hand. This phenomenon will require a lot of finances and planning by participating countries.

The vulnerable parties should be imparted education, adequately equipped and informed and also awareness should be created amongst them. Anti- human smuggling police units needs to be set up and properly trained. This would help in the administration of justices to all victim on all levels. Helpline number should be made publicly known and available and victims immigration status should not be a hindrance to accessibility of help during a distress call. Interpreters who can speak to the victims in their local languages so as to make them more at ease in reporting a human smuggling cases and also to provide effective understanding should be appointed.[10]

[1] www.slideshare.net/Ibrowning9/human-trafficking-powerpoint-presentation

[2] http://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/human-trafficking/global-report-on-trafficking-in-persons.html

[3] www.ilo.org/global/about-the-ilo/newsroom/news/WCMS-181961/lang-en/index.htm

[4] http://facts.randomhistory.com/human-trafficking-facts.html

[5] Sf-hrc.org/what-human-trafficking

[6] https://www.interpol.int/crime-areas/Trafficking-in-human-beings/Types-of-human-trafficking

[7] Id

[8] Id

[9] https:/en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human-trafficking-in-india

[10] http://freedom4innocence.org/stop-human-trafficking/

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