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Global Issue: Human Trafficking

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Finally, an increase in corruption in developing countries has enabled trafficking in women to go unpunished despite being illegal. These trends have combined to make women “cheap and disposable”, particularly in developing countries with minimal implementation of both national and international human rights laws (Mohajerin, 2006). Improvement in Fighting Trafficking in Women International agreements seeking to prevent trafficking in women have existed for the last more than 50 years. Because of the particular effects of trafficking in women, these agreements have sought to provide comprehensive assistance to transit and destination countries in combating the practice (Potts, 2003).

They have also been aimed at providing assistance and protection to victims when they are returned to their original countries, including vocational training, legal and psychological counseling, medical care, and safe accommodation. For instance, the UN Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power seeks to ensure that victims, including trafficked women, can access prompt redress from the justice system (Potts, 2003). The Declaration also requires that governments in their original countries must ensure the victims are given access to social services, while also being informed of available social and health services.

However, these measures are mainly aimed at protecting the victims of trafficking in women. Because of the complexities of trafficking in women, the need for a multi-faceted approach has arisen in tackling the practice (Wirsing, 2012). While the anti-trafficking interventions at national level have mostly been focused on prosecution and legal reform, strategies that aim to be successful should move beyond the realm of prosecuting traffickers after the act. NGOs and governmental bodies have taken the lead in addressing trafficking, both in the short and long term, including awareness-raising and educational initiatives, lobbying efforts, and technical cooperation and training programs for the judiciary and law enforcement.

Educational initiatives as a form of raising awareness among the general public, as well as vulnerable girls and women, have gained increased relevance (Anonymous, 2003). For example, the US National Advisory Council on Violence against Women came up with a toolkit aimed at providing concrete guidelines for community and policy leaders and NGOs seeking to end victimization of women, including through trafficking (MacClain, 2006).

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