Thursday, March 27, 2014

Child Trafficking - The Road To Slavery

Child exploitation and trafficking is common news we come across on a daily basis, that the statistics are so frequently heard that we have grown to be numb to it. Though there are so many organisaton around the world to prevent child trafficking and slavery; why has this still been the industry than has an annual income of $32 Billion?

Of the world wide human trafficking 20% of them consist of children mostly girls and of which 72% are forced or deceived into prostitution and 18% in labour which also includes hazardous labour works. As estimated by the US Government, in 2013, 300, 000 children are trafficked within USA annually.

What is Child Trafficking?

Exploitation of kids, taking them out of their shielded environments and preying them on their susceptibility and innocence is Child Trafficking, it is also a form of child abuse, violation of human rights. This is also moving children internationally or inter-nation.

Most victims are drawn into this circumstance due to the deprivation of knowledge on the ways they are being exploited. There are several ways the victims are trafficked and for several purposes which includes but does not limit to prostitution and other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labour or services and removal of organs. Being a victim of child trafficking does not limit to momentarily abuse and slavery while under captivity but it also has long term effects on the victims, even after they are freed.

How are These Children Being Trafficked? 

Obviously every nation has two extremes of life styles, those who have accumulated wealth beyond their needs and the other who starve for a days meal. Such socio-economic inequality assisted by the vulnerability of  children to be manipulated and abused, and the demand for a cheap labour force steer child trafficking. Means of threatening, abduction or deception is used to allure the kids into crime activities or force them into hard labour.

 Of most reported accounts of child trafficking kids have been sold or handed over to exploiters, abusers and pimps mostly by close relatives, friends, befriended acquaintances and lastly by strangers who abduct them. In regions of India and Bangladesh where poverty prevails; marriage is often thought to be a way where parents get relieved of their burden of young girls, which has driven to the increasing of marriage bandits, who sell their temporary, one of many wives to different brothels after a period of married life.

There are instances when 'depraved' family members go forth to buy and sell the children they are entrusted to care and love, in exchange for shelter and food. Some traffickers kidnap children who they befriend on streets; homeless kids, children who runaway and others who seek shelter among kind strangers from their junkie parents. There are also instances where traffickers promise poverty stricken families of prosperous lives and jobs for their children in countries such as US and UK or capital cities of nations, bring them out of their safety environments and trade them.

How Do You Identify A Victim? 

Most children fail to realise they are being trafficked or enslaved unless they have been opened into the subject, due to the multiple forms of abuse they undergo or they fact they are reliant on adults, easily manipulated and made / forced to be loyal to their traffickers and pimps. Many prefer not to say about the abuses they face, and pretend they are happy and 'normal' as any other child. They involve in labour or prostitution in exchange for shelter and food, and often beaten and abused by the traffickers and pimps, rarely getting to know what rights have been bestowed upon them as children. They are forced into this trade in perpetual fear of their lives and fear to disclose the turbulence they are undergoing, not knowing child trafficking is child abuse and they are victims; not criminals.

Signs of child exploitation may include unusual behaviour than other kids of their own age, children moving in inappropriate places like factories and brothels, or association with adults most of the time, who are not their family or a relative. Children who are being trafficked will also be escorted by an adult, can be a trafficker, pimp or an agent, who is reluctant to be away from the child and these children are prohibited to have eye contacts with others or acquaint them. Children who have been trafficked usually lost of contact with their family and friends, which can be one mean of their escape.

There are many reasons children do not disclose their identity which includes threatens and retribution from the trafficker, suspicion on the authorities who are in the position to help them or unaware of the people who can really help them, self-guilt of the industry (especially child sex trafficking) they are involved, accepting their current situation as commendatory than the situation back home, fear of discrimination from communities and families or feelings of empathy on their traffickers (Stockholm syndrome).

What Can You Do?
Child trafficking is not something that happens to some child in some other place but an everyday abuse right in front of our eyes.

Right now as you are reading this there are thousands of innocent children who are being trafficked and exploited for their vulnerability and innocence, and this situation is getting no better with days.....

Raise Awareness
It is everyone's responsibility to know that children are being trafficked in and out of different nations, including your own country and know the signs to identify a victim. Raising awareness among everyone can lessen the number of victims being exploited, which also required a necessary understanding on the possible backgrounds of children.
Report Concerns
Approaching a  trafficker can only push the child into a further dangerous situation where they maybe silenced by threatens from the trafficker rather you can contact the local police or child welfare organisations.

The overall prevention to this deadly disease includes in discoursing to socio-economic incongruity, the demand for cheap labour force and making trafficking an unprofitable business through public awareness. With millions of children being exploited their is still silence prevalent, this silence should be broken and we should have an outrage  for our children being sold and bought. We should act now to stop child trafficking, they are NOT FOR SALE!