Some of us right now are being moved like commodities... Like herds of cattle with prices on our heads…
Crossing land borders and oceans, human traffic penetrates most countries of our world.
Considered a more lucrative trade than trafficking arms, human trafficking is currently one of the fastest growing profit sources for gangs and organized crime worldwide. It creates a massive USD$32 billion annually.
With such a large market, illegal cargo is shifting from drugs to human beings in the search for higher profits at lower risk. We, as cargo, have the unique advantage of “reuse” value with an average US$13,000 profit from each trafficked person traded into forced labour.
Victims are taken from 127 countries like the Ukraine, Thailand, Nigeria , to be exploited in 137 countries such as Belgium, Italy and the USA - among others rated ‘very high’ by the UN as recipients of trafficked persons.
While the real incidence of trafficking is difficult to ascertain due to its hidden nature, the UN estimates that at least 4 million people are trafficked each year. 1.2 million of these are believed to be children.
Of the known 12.3 million to 27 million modern-day slaves at least 2.4 million are in slavery as a result of human trafficking. 80% of these transnational victims are women and girls, trafficked specifically for the purpose of sexual exploitation.
Human trafficking is considered by most to be equivalent to slavery because it’s without consent. While smuggling migrants can be voluntary to start off with, any initial agreement becomes meaningless when people are abused or held in captivity. Trafficked people don’t consent to being prisoners.
Whether through psychological or physical force, most trafficked victims are the poorest people from our world’s poorest countries. Often from the streets, orphaned, abducted, or sold by parents or institutions, victims are lured by creative and ruthless recruiters. Victims may be attracted by promises of employment, through organized crime or through promises of higher standards of living elsewhere. The end result is however always the same… exploitation for profit.
Because of a global demand for cheap (often illegal) labour these vulnerable people find themselves sold into forced prostitution or begging, in forced military labour, forced adoption, forced marriage, forced child labour, forced into the commercial or private sex industry, at higher risk of HIV/AIDS, even experiencing the forced removal of their organs.
It’s obvious something has to be done…