Human Trafficking in the United States
In a complete defiance of the myth that human trafficking is a problem of the third world countries, research indicates that the United States is a source, transit, and destination for slave victims. The country currently leads in the rate of smuggling, buying, and selling of slaves among the developed countries. This makes the country one of the biggest modern day human trafficking grounds in the world for purposes of slavery (FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin 1).
Contrary to the traditional belief that human trafficking in the United States only feeds the commercial sex industry, the modern day slaves become recruits in factories, restaurants, domestic jobs, and grueling jobs among others. In addition, the changing dynamics also indicate that people of color are no longer the only victims. In as much as some of the practices of slavery have changed, the slaves still live lives full of misery like their ancient counterparts. The slaves undergo a life of starvation and forced labor among other dehumanizing conditions.
This booming industry targets people of all races in equal measure.The slaves are often under the control of cartels and organized syndicates or gangs who use coercion and violence among other styles to recruit people. The money from these activities mostly ends up in funding organized crimes. This also adds up to engaging in terrorism and terrorist activities.
Human trafficking has therefore become a matter of national security (Collins 1). The citizens of the United States must join in the fight against the rapidly spreading form of modern day slavery. This should include reporting any forms of human trafficking to the authorities such as the FBI. It is however important to note that fighting this vice needs much of the input of the victims, most of whom find it hard to blow the whistle.
Human trafficking in the United States and how the FBI is fighting the vice
The United States of America, though having tough laws on human trafficking remains the primary target and destination. This is majorly because of the big economy of the country, which often falls short of blue-collar workers. Furthermore, most employers display a willingness to hire undocumented workers. Therefore, it provides a ready market for the traffickers who provide the workers at lower rates. The United States also registers high levels of corruption in immigration and police departments. This means that the collusion between the government officials and human traffickers facilitates the growth of the illegal business.
However, following the passing of crucial laws and acts including the trafficking Victims Protection Act in 2000, the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) embarked on a myriad of activities to bring the traffickers to book. This includes the creation of public awareness and the forming of various departments in different States to investigate on reported issues, make arrests, and prosecute the suspects in federal courts. Furthermore, the FBI has increased its presence in the monitoring and investigation of common grounds for human trafficking activities, such as motels, dating sites, massage parlors, and advertisements in local newspapers.
Human traffickers in the neighborhood
The Americans are yet to come to terms with the fact that human traffickers exist everywhere including their neighborhoods. The various news reports that have exposed human trafficking in the most unlikely places have supported these allegations. The traffickers have also formulated modern ways of capturing slaves. Traffickers dominantly use coercion and deception in recruitment. The traffickers also exploit runaway youths and the destitute in their recruitments.
In the article, the girls in the next door provide a solid evidence of the presence of human traffickers in every neighborhood. The four underage girls discovered in the house had evidently worked as sex slaves and not prostitutes. The house was in an unexpected location where the traffickers managed to keep the girls there for a long time undetected. It is therefore important to inform the people to avoid assuming things just because the neighborhood seems safe. The annual super bowl event that took place in New Jersey is allegedly one of the biggest markets of human traffickers (Mogolescu 23).
Victims of Human Trafficking
The Americans believe that emigrants are the only victims of human trafficking (Collins 1). However, the human trafficking also claims the American citizens including children are victims. In addition, women and children form the highest percentage of victims sold to prostitution. Men tend to dominate the population that suffers exploitation in the labor market.
The intensified awareness among the Americans and rescue missions continue to help in increasing the number of human trafficking survivors. The survivors have also provided significant information that continues to help in rescuing other known and unknown victims. However, the biggest challenge is helping them make psychological recovery given the nature of dehumanizing ordeals they underwent.
Sports Events and Human Trafficking Controversies
Government Officials including politicians brand sporting activities, such as the super bowl as the biggest markets for human trafficking. The authorities, therefore, conduct intensive preparations for such events to help identify and arrest people associated with such practices. However, controversial issues that include the validity of the allegations arise (Mogolescu 23). The arrests made at any time during the events never amount to high numbers. This provides a platform for doubting the accuracy of the allegations. In addition, the authorities arrest the victims and treat them as criminals instead of offering a helping hand.
However, the point of agreement is that sporting events are by no means the cause of human trafficking but a window for advancing the activities of the traffickers. This has prompted lawmakers to formulate comprehensive laws to help in prosecuting the traffickers. This is especially after realizing that trafficking no longer focuses on sex workers only but widens its scope to other forms of slavery.
Using New Laws to Prevent Human Trafficking
The initiative made by the United Nations to involve a record of 117 nations in fighting human trafficking using legal means has improved the state of affairs, especially in the Unites States (United States Department of States 1). Countries, such as Sweden have managed to reduce the percentage of sex slavery by half. However, the success only echoes in reducing slavery in the illegal sex industry. This is at the expense of the legal migrants whose exploitation happens at the work place coupled by abuse from their masters. It is therefore important to protect this group of victims too using the law. This also follows the channel of creation of awareness that helps in reporting such activities.
Though modern slavery proves one of the hardest vices to blot out, fighting it is a human duty. This is because it helps in bringing justice to the deprived and helping them to enjoy their human rights. However, helping the victims to recover after rescue, especially psychologically still remains a challenge. It is therefore important to note that a paper is currently underway to address this issue as well as how the citizens should contribute in fighting human trafficking.
Collins, Amy. “Sex Trafficking of Americans: The Girls Next Door.” Vanity Fair. Vanity Fair May 24, 2011. Web. March 3, 2014.
FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin: Human sex trafficking. “ FBI.GOV. FBI, 2011. Web March 3, 2014.
Mogolescu, Kate. “The Super Bowl and Sex Trafficking.” New York Times, February 1, 2014. Section A; Column 0. Pg 23.Lexis Nexis.Web. March 3, 2014.
United States Department of States. “United States, Canada and Africa; U.S. Legislators Consider New Law to Prevent Human Trafficking.” Africa News. November 5, 2013.Lexis Nexis. March 3, 2014.