Despite frantic efforts by human rights activists, human trafficking remains as one most recurrent criminal activity in the global society. It has its roots is Mesopotamian environs and has continued to spread to other countries through different mechanisms.
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A formal definition of this vice is the recruitment and transportation of persons under either duress or abduction for purposes of exploitation. The exploitation ranges from rendering of prostitution services to compulsory labour. Studies indicate that most of the victims of this heinous crime are women and children emanating from poor family backgrounds1.
Promises of a good life and the absence of education opportunities for women have led to the increased levels of human trafficking. Human traffickers often study the weaknesses of their victims before coming up with the most effective way to lure them into their trap.
Human trafficking can be perceived to consist of three elements. The first element is the perpetration of the act. It can entail the conscription, the carrying or harboring of persons. The second element relates to how the action is achieved.
For instance, this trade is known to succeed through forceful abduction, coercion, deception or purchase from the bearer of the victim. The last element refers to the purpose for the exercise. The process is often done for exploitation purposes that include sexual molestation, forced labour or, in other instances, for the removal of organs.
According to the recent statistics, more than seventeen thousand foreigners are trafficked into United Sates. In addition, the numbers of those being trafficked within the country is greater than seventeen thousand. Presently, the greatest purpose for human trafficking is sexual exploitation, which has created a loophole for the spread of HIV to different parts of the world today.
Poverty is considered the greatest catalyst of human trafficking. Statistics indicate that lack for funds to educate oneself have resulted in the huge unemployment levels, especially among women, in the developing countries2. Lack of decent ways of earning an income has left people with no other alternative than to engage in sex trafficking.
In addition, parents have been reported to sell their daughters into slavery and prostitution dungeons to obtain funds to feed other members of the family. Therefore, among of the most efficient methods of combating human trafficking is the reduction of poverty levels and ensuring literacy levels are increased as much as possible.
Various governments have realized the speed at which this trade is taking root and are beginning to put in place measures to combat the vice. Consequently, a number of countries are members of the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT), a body formed to monitor the incidences of this trade.
The body has ten major objectives. First, it tries to create awareness of the existence of human trafficking and tries to mobilize people to put an end to it. Secondly, its tries to educate the vulnerable groups while alleviating the contributing factors. It also tries to ensure law enforcement agencies in different member countries are on the look out to apprehend traffickers besides ensuring there are enough resources for such activities.
The effects of human trafficking do not cease with the victim. It also takes a toll on the offspring left behind without a provider. Moreover, the children may be forced to undergo psychological abuse, hardship, lose trust in people or live with fear for their safety. Children are the future of any nation. Therefore, a nation that wishes to secure its future must invest in ways of ensuring they put an end to human trafficking.
Shelley, L., Human Trafficking: A Global Perspective, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA, 2010.
1 L. Shelley, Human Trafficking: A Global Perspective, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA, 2010 , p.23
2 Ibid., p.196.