Help Prevent Human Trafficking in These Four Places
January 7, 2016
By Matt Morrison
Content Editor, e3 Partners
It’s one of the leading social justice issues facing our world today. Globally, over 21 million living, breathing souls are enslaved. Roughly 1 in 5 human trafficking victims are forced into prostitution. 10% are enslaved by government leaders and nearly 70% are victims of forced labor. They live in the shadows of virtually every culture and society, including the United States, and the vast majority are women and young girls.
Throughout the month of January, the world is turning its attention to the problem of human trafficking. It’s a chance to raise awareness about the underlying causes, examine our own contributions to the problem, and fight for the freedom of the enslaved. It would be nearly impossible to seek restoration in some communities without addressing human trafficking head-on.
In addition to shopping responsibly and supporting legislation that fights trafficking, you can personally do something about this growing global crisis. Throughout the year, e3 Partners offers a specific set of mission trips that target communities where children are sourced for the slave trade. In these particularly vulnerable and impoverished regions, human trafficking cartels pose as sympathetic father figures, successful businessmen, or even religious leaders, convincing families to surrender their children’s identification papers. They promise steady income to the family and a better life in another country for the children. Instead, the children are subjected to prostitution and forced labor. With their victims’ travel papers in hand, the traffickers are able to make them disappear.
On e3 Priceless expeditions, participants venture into these communities and raise awareness about what really happens to children who are handed over to outsiders. It’s an opportunity to cut off human trafficking from the source by sharing the critical message that every life is priceless. In 2016, four countries will be reached:
In 2014, the U.S. State Department downgraded Thailand to Tier 3 status in their annual Trafficking in Persons (T.I.P.) report, the lowest grade given to a government in their fight against slave trade. Reports of internal corruption have only made the matter worse. An informal smuggling network is at work in outlying villages across Asia, subjecting their victims to 20-hour work days in Thailand’s fishing industry and prostitution in the red light districts.
Cambodia is regarded as a transit country for trafficking cartels, often sending their victims into Vietnam and Thailand. Those trafficked within the country are subjected to sexual exploitation at a young age or domestic servitude. In many cases, girls are sold off by their own mothers or romantic partners.
In Ethiopia, girls are forced into prostitution as early as eight years old. Meanwhile, boys are coerced to work as shop assistants or even beggars on the street. Since November 2013, over 163,000 Ethiopians have been smuggled into Saudi Arabia alone.
An estimated 65,000 children have been forced into prostitution in Colombia. Human trafficking has long been an issue for the country and, according to the United Nations, it is only getting worse. Economic hardships in outlying villages and towns have only exacerbated the situation, leading many desperate families to sell off their own children.
Want to do something about this growing human rights issue? Visit www.e3partners.org/priceless to explore expeditions going into these regions in 2016 and apply for a trip online!