Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Trafficking is a Labor Issue

Human trafficking in Thailand - 14 Apr 2008

Trafficking is a labor issue, an immigration issue, as well as a sex work issue. In all these cases, it is always a migration of an individual away from an impoverished situation in search of a chance to work and more opportunity.

Here, the Thai government has acknowledged their awareness of trafficking, yet little is done to address the horrific conditions and abusive exploitations of trafficked individuals. It is in their favor to pass the buck, because ultimately, their very economy actually thrives off of the cheap labor that trafficking brings.

And along the same lines, sex tourism is a big industry that brings in substantial profit for many big cities around the world. As long as governments maintain the *illusion* that they are morally upstanding - such as criminalizing prostitution or saying "We don't like it, but we need evidence" - the legislations that keep people hungry also keeps them vulnerable and open to the exploits of the rich and powerful.

Why would they want to change a thing?

Human Trafficking in Cambodia
Everywoman - Human Trafficking - 21 Sep 07 - Part 1

Dr. Bridget Anderson brings up a good point. She doesn't like the emphasis on the UN definition of "human trafficking", where its about moving, using force, coersion, or abuse for the purposes of exploitation. But we need to ask ourselves some really important questions:

What does exploitation mean?
What does force and coersion mean?
Why does movement matter?

A great informative video touching on the complicated issues of sex trafficking, making connections with the videos above regarding global human trafficking, and the steep prices people will pay in search of a better life.

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