A great paper needs a great topic. The topic you choose will show your teacher how well you have understood the assignment. Unfortunately, leaving your assignment till the last moment can be disastrous to your grade. This is especially true if you have to come up with a critical essay on a tricky subject such as human trafficking.
If you are having a tough time coming up with appropriate critical essay topics about human trafficking, you have come to the right place. The following lines offer a list of 20 topics related to this subject. There is a handy list of references and source materials at the end which you can use as research material.
- The Cross-Border Challenges of Dealing with Human Trafficking
- Issues Faced by Law Enforcement During Human Trafficking Investigation
- Rehabilitating Victims of Human Trafficking: Ethical and Practical Considerations
- Human Traffickers and Their Methods of Operating
- Invisible to The Naked Eye: Hidden Forms of Human Trafficking
- Understanding the Major Indicators of Human Trafficking
- Human Trafficking as the Modern-Day Slavery
- Anti-Human Trafficking Campaigns in Cultural Media
- The Anonymity of the Internet: A Boon for Human Traffickers
- The Differences between Human Smuggling and Human Trafficking
- The Aftermath of War: Women Enslavement and Trafficking
- Human Trafficking: Influence of Cultural Factors
- The Exploitation of Humanity: How Human Trafficking Became a $150 Billion Global Industry
- A Perspective on Clients: Who Buys From Human Traffickers?
- Armed Conflict Zones are Breeding Grounds for The Illicit Trade of Human Trafficking
- Philanthropy Engineering: How Advanced Tech Can Help Victims of Human Trafficking
- How Anti-Money Laundering Efforts Combat Human Trafficking
- Comparing International Trafficking and Domestic Trafficking
- The Ideal Victim: Predictors of Human Trafficking
- Using Children for in Armed Conflicts
Since word count requirements vary across the board, we have tried to keep the topics a little generalized. Feel free to narrow them down according to your interests. Remember to limit the scope of your paper to a particular time period, geographical location, a pivotal case, the efforts of a specific humanitarian/aid agency, a specific piece of legislation, the efforts of a specific political figure, or even a documentary.
If you cannot find a suitable topic from these, check out our list of 10 facts on human trafficking for a critical essay.
Since we are here to help, here is a sample paper which you can use as an outline for your critical essay. A more detailed guide on how to write a critical essay on human trafficking is also available and you can learn to effectively write this type of assignment with our 10 facts on the subject.
Sample Critical Essay on Trafficking for Organ Trade and Body Parts: The Emergence of a Disturbing Dimension in Human Trafficking
Human trafficking is the worst form of abuse that can be inflicted on an individual. The horror of the crime lies in the fact that is negates very humanity of the victims. This modern-day equivalent of slavery continues unabated; the complex nature of the crime makes detecting and controlling it difficult. The most common cases are ones in which human traffickers sexually exploit their victims or force them into hard labor. The less commonly known forms of human trafficking involves an extreme form of cruelty: where the victims are trafficked for organ trade.
According to the UN Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (GIFT), organ trafficking has three basic categories: (1) the victims are somehow deceived or coerced by force to give up the organ; (2) commercial transaction where the victim is not paid or paid less than the promised amount; (3) when the organs are removed without the victim’s knowledge.
A report by the European Parliament (EP) states that organ trafficking and trafficking of human beings for organ removal (TBHOR) has become widespread over the span of the past 16 years. Until recently, most of these cases have occurred in Eastern European countries and Russia. However, the implementation of tougher law enforcement rules has decreased the incidence rates in these countries.
Unfortunately, traffickers have simply switched tactics and moved onto other regions, such as Latin America and North Africa. These regions suffer from economic and political instability. Under such conditions, human traffickers find the ideal victim pool, i.e. people who are already a part of at-risk sections of society, such as migrant workers, those living below the poverty line, members of highly marginalized groups, homeless people, and illiterate people.
The entire process involves a host of people as well as high levels of coordination and organization: the medical professionals who are responsible for the procedure, the middlemen, the buyers, the organ banks where the organs are stored, and transporters who are responsible for the logistics.
The recommendations of legislating bodies and humanitarian agencies state that this issue can only be addressed through proper legislation covering all the aspects of the crime and proper implementation of these laws. National laws of each country should have an anti-trafficking policy. An increase in public awareness of organ donation will drive up donation rates, hopefully closing some of the gap between the number of organs needed for transplantation and available organs. EP also recommends that the donor recipient should be held criminally and morally liable. The technical recommendations include improvement of organ traceability systems.
Human trafficking is a reality that the public in general needs to realize and react to. More awareness, education, and stronger legal frameworks will allow vulnerable victims to escape the horrors of this experience.
This is just a sample that can inspire you to come up with a great critical essay that will win over your instructor. So, make sure that you start working on your paper right away.
Vienna Forum to Fight Human Trafficking, Technology and Human Trafficking 8 (Background Paper, 2008), https://www.unodc.org/documents/human-trafficking/2008/BP017TechnologyandHumanTrafficking.pdf
Trafficking in Persons for the Purpose of Organ Removal (ASSESSMENT TOOLKIT,2015),
European Union, European Parliament. (2015). Trafficking in human organs. Retrieved from http://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/STUD/2015/549055/EXPO_STU(2015)549055_EN.pdf
Lehti, M. (2003), Trafficking in women and children in Europe, in HEUNI papers, no. 18, Helsinki: HEUNI.
Banks, D., and Kyckelhahn, T. (2011). Characteristics of Suspected Human Trafficking Incidents: 2008–2010. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Washington, D.C.: Office of Justice Programs
International Organization for Migration. (2012). IOM 2011 Case Data on Human Trafficking: Global Figures & Trends. Washington: Humantrafficking.org.
Polaris Project. (2014). “The Victims.” Retrieved January 28, 2014, from Polaris Project: For a World without Slavery, http://www.polarisproject.org/human-trafficking/ overview/the-victims.
Bales, K., and Trodd, Z. (2009). Modern Slavery: The Secret World of 27 Million People. Oxford: Oneworld.
Palmiotto, M. Combating human trafficking (pp. 30-32).
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Tags: critical essay ideas, critical essay topics
For the television show, see Human Trafficking (miniseries). For other uses, see Human trafficking (disambiguation).
See also: Slavery
Human trafficking is the trade of humans for the purpose of forced labour, sexual slavery, or commercial sexual exploitation for the trafficker or others. This may encompass providing a spouse in the context of forced marriage, or the extraction of organs or tissues, including for surrogacy and ova removal. Human trafficking can occur within a country or trans-nationally. Human trafficking is a crime against the person because of the violation of the victim's rights of movement through coercion and because of their commercial exploitation. Human trafficking is the trade in people, especially women and children, and does not necessarily involve the movement of the person from one place to another.
According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), forced labor alone (one component of human trafficking) generates an estimated $150 billion in profits per annum as of 2014. In 2012, the ILO estimated that 21 million victims are trapped in modern-day slavery. Of these, 14.2 million (68%) were exploited for labor, 4.5 million (22%) were sexually exploited, and 2.2 million (10%) were exploited in state-imposed forced labor.
Human trafficking is thought to be one of the fastest-growing activities of trans-national criminal organizations.
Human trafficking is condemned as a violation of human rights by international conventions. In addition, human trafficking is subject to a directive in the European Union.
Although human trafficking can occur at local or domestic levels, it has international implications, as recognized by the United Nations in the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (also referred to as the Trafficking Protocol or the Palermo Protocol), an international agreement under the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (CTOC) which entered into force on 25 December 2003. The protocol is one of three which supplement the CTOC. The Trafficking Protocol is the first global, legally binding instrument on trafficking in over half a century, and the only one with an agreed-upon definition of trafficking in persons. One of its purposes is to facilitate international cooperation in investigating and prosecuting such trafficking. Another is to protect and assist human trafficking's victims with full respect for their rights as established in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Trafficking Protocol, which now[timeframe?] has 173 parties, defines human trafficking as:
(a) [...] the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal, manipulation or implantation of organs;
(b) The consent of a victim of trafficking in persons to the intended exploitation set forth in sub-paragraph (a) of this article shall be irrelevant where any of the means set forth in subparagraph (a) have been used;
(c) The recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation shall be considered "trafficking in persons" even if this does not involve any of the means set forth in sub-paragraph (a) of this article;
(d) "Child" shall mean any person under eighteen years of age.
In 2014, the International Labour Organization estimated $150 billion in annual profit is generated from forced labor alone.
The average cost of a human trafficking victim today is USD $90 whereas the average slave in 1800 America cost the equivalent to USD $40,000.
Usage of the term
Human trafficking differs from people smuggling, which involves a person voluntarily requesting or hiring another individual to covertly transport them across an international border, usually because the smuggled person would be denied entry into a country by legal channels. Though illegal, there may be no deception or coercion involved. After entry into the country and arrival at their ultimate destination, the smuggled person is usually free to find their own way. According to the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), people smuggling is a violation of national immigration laws of the destination country, and does not require violations of the rights of the smuggled person. Human trafficking, on the other hand, is a crime against a person because of the violation of the victim's rights through coercion and exploitation. Unlike most cases of people smuggling, victims of human trafficking are not permitted to leave upon arrival at their destination.
While smuggling requires travel, trafficking does not. Trafficked people are held against their will through acts of coercion, and forced to work for or provide services to the trafficker or others. The work or services may include anything from bonded or forced labor to commercial sexual exploitation. The arrangement may be structured as a work contract, but with no or low payment, or on terms which are highly exploitative. Sometimes the arrangement is structured as debt bondage, with the victim not being permitted or able to pay off the debt.
Bonded labor, or debt bondage, is probably the least known form of labor trafficking today, and yet is the most widely used method of enslaving people. Victims become "bonded" when their labor, the labor which they themselves hired and the tangible goods they have bought are demanded as a means of repayment for a loan or service whose terms and conditions have not been defined, or where the value of the victims' services is not applied toward the liquidation of the debt. Generally, the value of their work is greater than the original sum of money "borrowed".
Forced labor is a situation in which victims are forced to work against their own will under the threat of violence or some other form of punishment; their freedom is restricted and a degree of ownership is exerted. Men are at risk of being trafficked for unskilled work, which globally generates 31 billion USD according to the International Labour Organization. Forms of forced labor can include domestic servitude, agricultural labor, sweatshop factory labor, janitorial, food service and other service industry labor, and begging. Some of the products that can be produced by forced labor are: clothing, cocoa, bricks, coffee, cotton, and gold.
The International Organization for Migration (IOM), the single largest global provider of services to victims of trafficking, reports receiving an increasing number of cases in which victims were subjected to forced labor. A 2012 study observes that "… 2010 was particularly notable as the first year in which IOM assisted more victims of labor trafficking than those who had been trafficked for purposes of sexual exploitation."
Child labour is a form of work that may be hazardous to the physical, mental, spiritual, moral, or social development of children and can interfere with their education. According to the International Labour Organization, the global number of children involved in child labor has fallen during the past decade – it has declined by one third, from 246 million in 2000 to 168 million children in 2012. Sub-Saharan Africa is the region with the highest incidence of child labour, while the largest numbers of child-workers are found in Asia and the Pacific.
The UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has further assisted many non-governmental organizations in their fight against human trafficking. The 2006 armed conflict in Lebanon, which saw 300,000 domestic workers from Sri Lanka, Ethiopia and the Philippines jobless and targets of traffickers, led to an emergency information campaign with NGO Caritas Migrant to raise human-trafficking awareness. Additionally, an April 2006 report, Trafficking in Persons: Global Patterns, helped to identify 127 countries of origin, 98 transit countries and 137 destination countries for human trafficking. To date, it is the second most frequently downloaded UNODC report. Continuing into 2007, UNODC supported initiatives like the Community Vigilance project along the border between India and Nepal, as well as provided subsidy for NGO trafficking prevention campaigns in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia. Public service announcements have also proved useful for organizations combating human trafficking. In addition to many other endeavors, UNODC works to broadcast these announcements on local television and radio stations across the world. By providing regular access to information regarding human-trafficking, individuals are educated how to protect themselves and their families from being exploited.
The United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT) was conceived to promote the global fight on human trafficking, on the basis of international agreements reached at the UN. UN.GIFT was launched in March 2007 by UNODC with a grant made on behalf of the United Arab Emirates. It is managed in cooperation with the International Labour Organization (ILO); the International Organization for Migration (IOM); the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF); the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR); and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
Within UN.GIFT, UNODC launched a research exercise to gather primary data on national responses to trafficking in persons worldwide. This exercise resulted in the publication of the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons in February 2009. The report gathers official information for 155 countries and territories in the areas of legal and institutional framework, criminal justice response and victim assistance services. UN.GIFT works with all stakeholders — governments, business, academia, civil society and the media — to support each other's work, create new partnerships, and develop effective tools to fight human trafficking.
The Global Initiative is based on a simple principle: human trafficking is a crime of such magnitude and atrocity that it cannot be dealt with successfully by any government alone. This global problem requires a global, multi-stakeholder strategy that builds on national efforts throughout the world. To pave the way for this strategy, stakeholders must coordinate efforts already underway, increase knowledge and awareness, provide technical assistance, promote effective rights-based responses, build capacity of state and non-state stakeholders, foster partnerships for joint action, and above all, ensure that everybody takes responsibility for this fight. By encouraging and facilitating cooperation and coordination, UN.GIFT aims to create synergies among the anti-trafficking activities of UN agencies, international organizations and other stakeholders to develop the most efficient and cost-effective tools and good practices.
UN.GIFT aims to mobilize state and non-state actors to eradicate human trafficking by reducing both the vulnerability of potential victims and the demand for exploitation in all its forms, ensuring adequate protection and support to those who fall victim, and supporting the efficient prosecution of the criminals involved, while respecting the fundamental human rights of all persons. In carrying out its mission, UN.GIFT will increase the knowledge and awareness on human trafficking, promote effective rights-based responses, build capacity of state and non-state actors, and foster partnerships for joint action against human trafficking. For more information view the UN.GIFT Progress Report 2009. UNODC efforts to motivate action launched the Blue Heart Campaign Against Human Trafficking on 6 March 2009, which Mexico launched its own national version of in April 2010. The campaign encourages people to show solidarity with human trafficking victims by wearing the blue heart, similar to how wearing the red ribbon promotes transnational HIV/AIDS awareness. On 4 November 2010, U.N. Secretary-GeneralBan Ki-moon launched the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons to provide humanitarian, legal and financial aid to victims of human trafficking with the aim of increasing the number of those rescued and supported, and broadening the extent of assistance they receive.
In December 2012, UNODC published the new edition of the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons. The Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2012 has revealed that 27 per cent of all victims of human trafficking officially detected globally between 2007 and 2010 are children, up 7 per cent from the period 2003 to 2006.
The Global Report recorded victims of 136 different nationalities detected in 118 countries between 2007 and 2010, during which period, 460 different flows were identified. Around half of all trafficking took place within the same region with 27 per cent occurring within national borders. One exception is the Middle East, where most detected victims are East and South Asians. Trafficking victims from East Asia have been detected in more than 60 countries, making them the most geographically dispersed group around the world. There are significant regional differences in the detected forms of exploitation. Countries in Africa and in Asia generally intercept more cases of trafficking for forced labour, while sexual exploitation is somewhat more frequently found in Europe and in the Americas. Additionally, trafficking for organ removal was detected in 16 countries around the world.The Report raises concerns about low conviction rates – 16 per cent of reporting countries did not record a single conviction for trafficking in persons between 2007 and 2010. As of February 2018, 173 countries have ratified the United Nations Trafficking in Persons Protocol, of which UNODC is the guardian. Significant progress has been made in terms of legislation: as of 2012, 83 per cent of countries had a law criminalizing trafficking in persons in accordance with the Protocol.
Current international treaties (general)
- Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, entered into force in 1957
- Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children
- Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air
- Optional Protocol on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography
- ILO Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
- ILO Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 1957 (No. 105)
- ILO Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138)
- ILO Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182)
Main article: Human trafficking in the United States
In 2002, Derek Ellerman and Katherine Chon founded a non-government organization called Polaris Project to combat human trafficking. In 2007, Polaris instituted the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) where callers can report tips and receive information on human trafficking. Polaris' website and hotline informs the public about where cases of suspected human trafficking have occurred within the United States. The website records calls on a map.
In 2007, the U.S. Senate designated 11 January as a National Day of Human Trafficking Awareness in an effort to raise consciousness about this global, national and local issue. In 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013, President Barack Obama proclaimed January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. Along with these initiatives libraries across the United States are beginning to contribute to human trafficking awareness. Slowly, libraries are turning into educational centers for those who are not aware of this issue. They are collaborating with other organizations to train staff members to spot human trafficking victims and find ways to help them.
In 2014, DARPA funded the Memex program with the explicit goal of combating human trafficking via domain-specific search. The advanced search capacity, including its ability to reach into the dark web has already allowed for prosecution of human trafficking cases, although they can be difficult to prosecute due to the fraudulent tactics of the human traffickers.
Because of its size and the access to its large airport, Atlanta, Georgia is known as the core of trafficking in the United States. A 2014 study by Urban Institute showed that some traffickers, or "pimps", in Atlanta grossed over $32,000 in one week.
Council of Europe
On 3 May 2005, the Committee of Ministers adopted the Council of EuropeConvention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (CETS No. 197). The Convention was opened for signature in Warsaw on 16 May 2005 on the occasion of the 3rd Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Council of Europe. On 24 October 2007, the Convention received its tenth ratification thereby triggering the process whereby it entered into force on 1 February 2008. As of June 2017, the Convention has been ratified by 47 states (including Belarus, a non-Council of Europe state), with Russia being the only state to not have ratified (nor signed).
While other international instruments already exist in this field, the Council of Europe Convention, the first European treaty in this field, is a comprehensive treaty focusing mainly on the protection of victims of trafficking and the safeguard of their rights. It also aims to prevent trafficking and to prosecute traffickers. In addition, the Convention provides for the setting up of an effective and independent monitoring mechanism capable of controlling the implementation of the obligations contained in the Convention.
The Convention is not restricted to Council of Europe member states; non-member states and the European Union also have the possibility of becoming Party to the Convention. In 2013 Belarus became the first non-Council of Europe member state to accede to the Convention.
The Convention established a Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) which monitors the implementation of the Convention through country reports. As of 1 March 2013, GRETA has published 17 country reports.
Complementary protection against sex trafficking of children is ensured through the Council of EuropeConvention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse (signed in Lanzarote, 25 October 2007). The Convention entered into force on 1 July 2010. As of September 2017, the Convention has been ratified by 42 states, with another 5 states having signed but not yet ratified.
In addition, the European Court of Human Rights of the Council of Europe in Strasbourg has passed judgments concerning trafficking in human beings which violated obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights: Siliadin v. France, judgment of 26 July 2005, and Rantsev v. Cyprus and Russia, judgment of 7 January 2010.
Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe
Main article: Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
In 2003, the OSCE established an anti-trafficking mechanism aimed at raising public awareness of the problem and building the political will within participating states to tackle it effectively.
The OSCE actions against human trafficking are coordinated by the Office of the Special Representative for Combating the Traffic of Human Beings. In January 2010, Maria Grazia Giammarinaro became the OSCE Special Representative and Co-ordinator for Combating Trafficking in Human Beings. Dr. Giammarinaro (Italy) has been a judge at the Criminal Court of Rome since 1991. She served from 2006 until 2009 in the European Commission's Directorate-General for Justice, Freedom and Security in Brussels, where she was responsible for work to combat human trafficking and sexual exploitation of children, as well as for penal aspects of illegal immigration within the unit dealing with the fight against organized crime. During this time, she co-ordinated the Group of Experts on Trafficking in Human Beings of the European Commission. From 2001 to 2006 she was a judge for preliminary investigation in the Criminal Court of Rome. Prior to that, from 1996 she was Head of the Legislative Office and Adviser to the Minister for Equal Opportunities. From 2006 to December 2009 the office was headed by Eva Biaudet, a former Member of Parliament and Minister of Health and Social Services in her native Finland.
The activities of the Office of the Special Representative range from training law enforcement agencies to tackle human trafficking to promoting policies aimed at rooting out corruption and organised crime. The Special Representative also visits countries and can, on their request, support the formation and implementation of their anti-trafficking policies. In other cases the Special Representative provides advice regarding implementation of the decisions on human trafficking, and assists governments, ministers and officials to achieve their stated goals of tackling human trafficking.
India Anti Human Trafficking Portal
In India, the trafficking in persons for commercial sexual exploitation, forced labor, forced marriages and domestic servitude is considered an organized crime. The Government of India applies the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act 2013, active from 3 February 2013, as well as Section 370 and 370A IPC, which defines human trafficking and "provides stringent punishment for human trafficking; trafficking of children for exploitation in any form including physical exploitation; or any form of sexual exploitation, slavery, servitude or the forced removal of organs." Additionally, a Regional Task Force implements the SAARC Convention on the prevention of Trafficking in Women and Children.
Shri R.P.N. Singh, India's Minister of State for Home Affairs, launched a government web portal, the Anti Human Trafficking Portal, on 20 February 2014. The official statement explained that the objective of the on-line resource is for the "sharing of information across all stakeholders, States/UTs[Union Territories] and civil society organizations for effective implementation of Anti Human Trafficking measures." The key aims of the portal are:
- Aid in the tracking of cases with inter-state ramifications.
- Provide comprehensive information on legislation, statistics, court judgements, United Nations Conventions, details of trafficked people and traffickers and rescue success stories.
- Provide connection to "Trackchild", the National Portal on Missing Children that is operational in many states.
Also on 20 February, the Indian government announced the implementation of a Comprehensive Scheme that involves the establishment of Integrated Anti Human Trafficking Units (AHTUs) in 335 vulnerable police districts throughout India, as well as capacity building that includes training for police, prosecutors and judiciary. As of the announcement, 225 Integrated AHTUs had been made operational, while 100 more AHTUs were proposed for the forthcoming financial year.
The Anti-trafficking Policy Index
The '3P Anti-trafficking Policy Index' measures the effectiveness of government policies to fight human trafficking based on an evaluation of policy requirements prescribed by the United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (2000).
The policy level is evaluated using a five-point scale, where a score of five indicates the best policy practice, while score 1 is the worst. This scale is used to analyze the main three anti-trafficking policy areas: (i) prosecuting (criminalizing) traffickers, (ii) protecting victims, and (iii) preventing the crime of human trafficking. Each sub-index of prosecution, protection and prevention is aggregated to the overall index with an unweighted sum, with the overall index ranging from a score of 3 (worst) to 15 (best). It is available for up to 177 countries over the 2000–2009 period (on an annual basis).
The outcome of the Index shows that anti-trafficking policy has overall improved over the 2000–2009 period. Improvement is most prevalent in the prosecution and prevention areas worldwide. An exception is protection policy, which shows a modest deterioration in recent years.
In 2009 (the most recent year of the evaluation), seven countries demonstrate the highest possible performance in policies for all three dimensions (overall score 15). These countries are Germany, Australia, the Netherlands, Italy, Belgium, Sweden and the US. The second best performing group (overall score 14) consists of France, Norway, South Korea, Croatia, Canada, Austria, Slovenia and Nigeria. The worst performing country in 2009 was North Korea, receiving the lowest score in all dimensions (overall score 3), followed by Somalia. For more information view the Human Trafficking Research and Measurement website.
In 2014, for the first time in history major leaders of many religions, Buddhist, Anglican, Catholic, and Orthodox Christian, Hindu, Jewish, and Muslim, met to sign a shared commitment against modern-day slavery; the declaration they signed calls for the elimination of slavery and human trafficking by the year 2020. The signatories were: Pope Francis, Mātā Amṛtānandamayī (also known as Amma), Bhikkhuni Thich Nu Chân Không (representing Zen Master Thích Nhất Hạnh), Datuk K Sri Dhammaratana, Chief High Priest of Malaysia, Rabbi Abraham Skorka, Rabbi David Rosen, Abbas Abdalla Abbas Soliman, Undersecretary of State of Al Azhar Alsharif (representing Mohamed Ahmed El-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Al-Azhar), Grand Ayatollah Mohammad Taqi al-Modarresi, Sheikh Naziyah Razzaq Jaafar, Special advisor of Grand Ayatollah (representing Grand Ayatollah Sheikh Basheer Hussain al Najafi), Sheikh Omar Abboud, Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, and Metropolitan Emmanuel of France (representing Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew.)
One of the organizations taking the most active part in the anti-trafficking is the United Nations. In early 2016 the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Kazakhstan to the United Nations held an interactive discussion entitled "Responding to Current Challenges in Trafficking in Human Beings".
One of the current efforts being done to combat human trafficking is an app called TraffickCam. This app was created by the Exchange Initiative and researchers at Washington University. TraffckCam was launched on June 20, 2016 and enables anyone to take photos of their hotel rooms, which then gets uploaded to a large database of hotel images. Since human trafficking victims are often found in hotel rooms for online advertisements, law enforcement and investigators can use these photos to help find and prosecute traffickers.
Anti-trafficking awareness and fundraising campaigns constitute a significant portion of anti-trafficking initiatives. The 24 Hour Race is one such initiative that focuses on increasing awareness among high school students in Asia. The Blue Campaign is another anti-trafficking initiative that works with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to combat human trafficking and bring freedom to exploited victims.
The Blue Campaign collaborates with law enforcement, government, non-governmental, and private organizations to end human trafficking and protect victims.
Trafficking in Persons Report released in June 2016 states that "refugees and migrants; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals; religious minorities; people with disabilities; and those who are stateless" are the most at-risk for human trafficking. Governments best protect victims from being exploited when the needs of vulnerable populations are understood.
Trafficking of children
See also: Child harvesting
Trafficking of children involves the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of children for the purpose of exploita commercial sexual exploitation of children can take many forms, including forcing a child into prostitution or other forms of sexual activity or child pornography. Child exploitation may also involve forced labour or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude, the removal of organs, illicit international adoption, trafficking for early marriage, recruitment as child soldiers, for use in begging or as athletes (such as child camel jockeys or football players).
IOM statistics indicate that a significant minority (35%) of trafficked persons it assisted in 2011 were less than 18 years of age, which is roughly consistent with estimates from previous years. It was reported in 2010 that Thailand and Brazil were considered to have the worst child sex trafficking records.
Traffickers in children may take advantage of the parents' extreme poverty. Parents may sell children to traffickers in order to pay off debts or gain income, or they may be deceived concerning the prospects of training and a better life for their children. They may sell their children into labor, sex trafficking, or illegal adoptions.
The adoption process, legal and illegal, when abused can sometimes result in cases of trafficking of babies and pregnant women from developing countries to the West. In David M. Smolin's papers on child trafficking and adoption scandals between India and the United States, he presents the systemic vulnerabilities in the inter-country adoption system that makes adoption scandals predictable.
The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child at Article 34, states, "States Parties undertake to protect the child from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse". In the European Union, commercial sexual exploitation of children is subject to a directive – Directive 2011/92/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 13 December 2011 on combating the sexual abuse and sexual exploitation of children and child pornography.
The Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (or Hague Adoption Convention) is an international convention dealing with international adoption, that aims at preventing child laundering, child trafficking, and other abuses related to international adoption.
The Optional Protocol on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict seeks to prevent forceful recruitment (e.g. by guerrilla forces) of children for use in armed conflicts.
Main article: Sex trafficking
Sex trafficking affects 4.5 million people worldwide. Most victims find themselves in coercive or abusive situations from which escape is both difficult and dangerous.
Trafficking for sexual exploitation was formerly thought of as the organized movement of people, usually women, between countries and within countries for sex work with the use of physical coercion, deception and bondage through forced debt. However, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (US), does not require movement for the offence. The issue becomes contentious when the element of coercion is removed from the definition to incorporate facilitation of consensual involvement in prostitution. For example, in the United Kingdom, the Sexual Offences Act 2003 incorporated trafficking for sexual exploitation but did not require those committing the offence to use coercion, deception or force, so that it also includes any person who enters the UK to carry out sex work with consent as having been "trafficked." In addition, any minor involved in a commercial sex act in the US while under the age of 18 qualifies as a trafficking victim, even if no force, fraud or coercion is involved, under the definition of "Severe Forms of Trafficking in Persons" in the US Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000.
Sexual trafficking includes coercing a migrant into a sexual act as a condition of allowing or arranging the migration. Sexual trafficking uses physical or sexual coercion, deception, abuse of power and bondage incurred through forced debt. Trafficked women and children, for instance, are often promised work in the domestic or service industry, but instead are sometimes taken to brothels where they are required to undertake sex work, while their passports and other identification papers confiscated. They may be beaten or locked up and promised their freedom only after earning – through prostitution – their purchase price, as well as their travel and visa costs.
Main article: Forced marriage
A forced marriage is a marriage where one or both participants are married without their freely given consent.Servile marriage is defined as a marriage involving a person being sold, transferred or inherited into that marriage. According to ECPAT, "Child trafficking for forced marriage is simply another manifestation of trafficking and is not restricted to particular nationalities or countries".
A forced marriage qualifies as a form of human trafficking in certain situations. If a woman is sent abroad, forced into the marriage and then repeatedly compelled to engage in sexual conduct with her new husband, then her experience is that of sex trafficking. If the bride is treated as a domestic servant by her new husband and/or his family, then this is a form of labor trafficking.
Further information: Unfree labour
Labour trafficking is the movement of persons for the purpose of forced labor and services. It may involve bonded labor, involuntary servitude, domestic servitude, and child labor. Labor trafficking happens most often within the domain of domestic work, agriculture, construction, manufacturing and entertainment; and migrant workers and indigenous people are especially at risk of becoming victims. People smuggling operations are also known to traffic people for the exploitation of their labour, for example, as transporters.
Trafficking for organ trade
Trafficking in organs is a form of human trafficking. It can take different forms. In some cases, the victim is compelled into giving up an organ. In other cases, the victim agrees to sell an organ in exchange of money/goods, but is not paid (or paid less). Finally, the victim may have the organ removed without the victim's knowledge (usually when the victim is treated for another medical problem/illness – real or orchestrated problem/illness). Migrant workers, homeless persons, and illiterate persons are particularly vulnerable to this form of exploitation. Trafficking of organs is an organized crime, involving several offenders:
- the recruiter
- the transporter
- the medical staff
- the middlemen/contractors
- the buyers
Trafficking for organ trade often seeks kidneys. Trafficking in organs is a lucrative trade because in many countries the waiting lists for patients who need transplants are very long.
There are many different estimates of how large the human trafficking and sex trafficking industries are. According to scholar Kevin Bales, author of Disposable People (2004), estimates that as many as 27 million people are in "modern-day slavery" across the globe. In 2008, the U.S. Department of State estimates that 2 million children are exploited by the global commercial sex trade. In the same year, a study classified 12.3 million individuals worldwide as "forced laborers, bonded laborers or sex-trafficking victims." Approximately 1.39 million of these individuals worked as commercial sex slaves, with women and girls comprising 98% of that 1.36 million.
The enactment of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (TVPA) in 2000 by the United States Congress and its subsequent re-authorizations established the Department of State's Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which engages with foreign governments to fight human trafficking and publishes a Trafficking in Persons Report annually. The Trafficking in Persons Report evaluates each country's progress in anti-trafficking and places each country onto one of three tiers based on their governments' efforts to comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking as prescribed by the TVPA. However, questions have been raised by critical anti-trafficking scholars about the basis of this tier system, its heavy focus on compliance with state department protocols, and its failure to consider "risk" and the likely prevalence of trafficking when rating the efforts of diverse countries.
In particular, there were three main components of the TVPA, commonly called the three P's:
Countries of origin
- Yellow: Moderate number of persons
- Orange: High number of persons
- Red: Very high number of persons
Countries of destination
- Light blue: High number of persons
- Blue: Very high number of persons
- Gray: No data
- Green: Trafficking is illegal and rare
- Yellow: Trafficking is illegal but problems still exist
- Purple: Trafficking is illegal but is still practiced
- Blue: Trafficking is limitedly illegal and is practiced
- Red: Trafficking is not illegal and is commonly practiced