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Human Trafficking in Latin America

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Elizabeth Novakowski

on 14 March 2013

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Transcript of Human Trafficking in Latin America

New Delhi What is Human Trafficking? Sex trafficking – a commercial sex act that is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery Algiers Warsaw International Labor Organization estimates 12.3 million people are in forced labor, bonded labor, forced child labor, or sexual servitude at any given time Other estimates vary from 4-27 million The U.N. estimates that 250,000 people are in forced labor in Latin America and the Caribbean (this is a LOW estimate)! Miami Between 2007 and 2010, victims were identified in 118 countries So, what's the deal? 460 trafficking routes were identified between 2007 and 2010 Rio de Janeiro Trafficking disproportionately affects women and children The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime estimate that on average, 65-75% of victims are women and 15-25% are minors The International Labour Organization estimates that women and girls account for 56% of victims in forced economic exploitation, such as domestic service, agricultural work, and manufacturing—and 98% of victims in forced commercial sexual exploitation Countries in Latin America have been identified as source, transit, and destination countries Source: Colombia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Paraguay
Transit: All of Central America and the Caribbean
Destination: Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Mexico, Netherland Antilles, Panama, St. Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago. Factors that contribute to trafficking in the region are individual and external Individual risk factors include poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, history of physical or sexual abuse, homelessness, drug use, and gang membership. Outside factors include: (1) high global
demand for domestic servants, agricultural laborers, sex workers, and factory labor; (2) political, social, or economic crises, as well as natural disasters occurring in particular countries; (3) lingering chauvinistic attitudes and practices that tends to lead to discrimination against women and girls; (4) existence of established trafficking networks with sophisticated recruitment methods; (5) public corruption, especially complicity between law enforcement and border agents with traffickers and alien smugglers; (6) restrictive immigration policies in some destination countries that have limited the opportunities for legal migration flows to occur; (7) government disinterest in the issue of human trafficking; and (8) limited economic opportunities for women in Latin America. Human Trafficking is the 2nd largest criminal industry in the world, just under drug trafficking and tied with illegal arms Whaaaaaat?!?!? It's estimated to be a $32 billion dollar industry globally with $16 billion in profits in Latin America Bogota Operation White Light Shuts Down Human Trafficking Ring in Colombia Colombian authorities arrested 19, of whom 12 were Cali-based medical doctors. The prisoners are facing charges ranging from human smuggling, conspiracy, and producing and selling false identity documents. Brazil Paraguay Argentina Smugglers pass through the mountainous path that separates Argentina from Brazil.It is just one of a dozen or more unofficial crossing points on the so-called triple frontier, the name given to the porous border area where Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil meet. Those trafficked through the triple frontier are destined for the illegal labor market in Brazil or Argentina. A large proportion end up as sex workers - many end up in brothels across the region, although a high number are destined for the triple frontier's own thriving sex industry.

- www.humantrafficking.org In some cases of extreme destitution, children are even contracted out by their parents. There is a blind beggar in Puerto Igazú, for example, who walks the streets hand-in-hand with a seven year-old girl. He makes his living by renting her out for sex.

- www.humantrafficking.org For example:

Trying to support a nine-year old daughter back home, Benito followed a
brother who had found work at the brick kilns at Transcameta in the Brazilian Amazon. Promised adequate pay, he was deceived into working for
an employer who did not pay him, but rather assigned him an ever growing debt for food and lodging costs not previously disclosed. He toiled six days a week and couldn’t afford to leave, since he didn’t have enough money to get
back to his home 500 miles away. Benito and the other slave laborers were not paid anything for months. He was afraid he wouldn’t see any wages at all if he left. Benito lived next to the brick kilns in a shack with no ventilation, running
water, or electricity. He contracted malaria from the mosquitoes that swarmed the camp

- Dept. of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report" (2006) So what's being done? In Brazil, the ILO "will contribute to combating trafficking in persons through a more effective law enforcement response and through an increase in the capacity of public and civil society organizations, at the Federal, state and municipal levels, to enforce the law and implement anti-trafficking in persons policies and programs"

- Special Action Programme to combat Forced Labour, International Labour Organization The Organization of American States has "organized, facilitated, and implemented training programs, promoted anti-trafficking policies, and provided opportunities for the exchange of information and best practices to assist member states in their anti-TIP efforts"

- Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean, Congressional Research Service "Over the last year, the government increased efforts to punish internal and transnational sex trafficking and took several measures to address forced labor," but prosecutions remained lacking.

- Dept. of State, Trafficking in Persons Report (2006) First off, Brazil is a Tier 2 country, according to the Dept. of State "Trafficking in Persons Report" (2006 & 2012) This means their government does not fully comply with the TVPA’s (Trafficking Victim's Protection Act) minimum standards but
is making significant efforts to bring itself into compliance with those standards The President "directed the creation of a national plan of action against trafficking for all forms of exploitation, the coordination of governmental anti-trafficking efforts through the Secretariat of Justice, and the dedication of funding for the government’s multi-sectoral anti-trafficking efforts."

-Dept. of State "Trafficking in Persons Report" (2006) Thousands of Brazilian men are subjected to slave labor within the country, often on cattle ranches, logging and mining camps, sugar-cane plantations, and large farms producing corn, cotton, soy, and charcoal, as well as in construction and deforestation. Some children have been identified in slave labor in cattle ranching, deforestation, mining, and agriculture.

- Dept. of State "Trafficking in Persons Report" (2012) In 2001, 2,800 potential trafficking victims were identified BUT only 9 convictions were reported... There was limited public knowledge of the convictions, and in some cases, the perpetrators were sentenced with less than 4 years imprisonment or community service. Resources Humantrafficking.org; http://www.humantrafficking.org/regions/central_and_south_america

International Labor Organization, Combating trafficking in persons in Brazil; http://www.ilo.org/sapfl/Projects/WCMS_082044/lang--en/index.htm

MTVExit, MK Ultra, Muse;

MTVExit, Warning Signs;

Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean (2012), Congressional Research Service; http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/row/RL33200.pdf

Trafficking in Persons Report (2007), U.S. Department of State

Trafficking in Persons Report (2012), U.S. Department of State; http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/192594.pdf Harare Human Trafficking in Latin America
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