Harlots Parlour

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The Ignored Victims Of Trafficking.

As a follow up to a previous post on the use of scapegoating by anti sex lobbyists, this recent article in the UK press highlights the plight of Romanian children being used as slave labour. The article dramatically emphasises the issues discussed in that post .
The unhealthy and usually vitriolic attack by anti sex work lobbyists on the sex industry results in the sidelining of the overwhelming majority of trafficking cases. The statistically small percentage of proven cases of trafficking of women and children for sexual slavery is hugely outnumbered by the 90% plus of trafficking victims who suffer appallingly to pick the fruit and vegetables we all consume.
I have not once heard Mallissa Farley or Julie Bindel or any of the other sensationalists who work tirelessly to create and maintain an hysteria around sex trafficking calling for the owners of super markets to be arrested or the shoppers at super markets to be made criminals for consuming the products of forced/coerced/trafficked labour. Instead these single minded lobbyists divert resources and attention away from the majority of trafficked and exploited victims. The result is the appalling suffering of children and women and men. Suffering conveniently ignored by both the media and most politicians. They are ignored because they are not sexy, or perhaps not exploitable as a story. No votes and no sales equals little attention.
The job of sex worker activists is to force both the media and politicians to be aware of the damage being caused by the anti sex lobbyists. Our job is to raise awareness of the suffering their deliberate blindness is causing. Victims of trafficking are ignored because of a moral crusade masquerading as genuine concern.
This is not justice.

The story is from the Mail on Line Monday, Oct 25 2010

Romanian children, some as young as nine, have been found working as ‘slaves’ in near freezing conditions in the first discovery of its kind.

The seven children were discovered without food or water and dressed in thin summer clothing working among 50 Romanian farm labourers picking spring onions last week.

Some of the children were with their parents but others appeared to have been brought to the field in the back of a box fan on their own, the Gangmaster’s Licensing Authority (GLA) said.

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About Douglas Fox

5 comments on “The Ignored Victims Of Trafficking.

  1. Stephen Paterson
    27 October, 2010

    Hi Douglas – long time no hear.

    Michael Goodyear tells me the latest US TIPS report says that it’s now calculated that only one in seven trafficked persons are trafficked for sex – a major contrast to the Bush years.

    Undoubtely the preoccupation with sex trafficking has been at the expense of many labouring in food harvesting and processing or in sweatshops.

  2. Douglas Fox
    28 October, 2010

    7% makes it even worse that so much effort/money and publicity and hysteria should be whipped up around sex trafficking while so many are ignored because their abuse is not considered sexy by the authorities or media.

    It is really shocking. I can’t understand why more is not made of this difference in numbers.

    Personally I think the statistics often muddy the waters in what in my opinon should be a striaght forward human rights issue. Never the less if 7% is true it is shocking that the public are not aware of this huge bias.

  3. Stephen Paterson
    28 October, 2010

    Not 7% – one in seven, which is about 14%. Mind you, I’ve taken everything that comes from the US government with a pillar of salt ever since Iraq.

    I can well believe the majority are trafficked for forced labour, though, as the market for food and clothing is universal and that for commercial sex is relatively very limited and in many places requires much greater subterfuge.

  4. Douglas Fox
    28 October, 2010

    It is still a very low number and as you say from a source that is perhaps questionable. Certainly a source that has an interest in maintaining a propaganda that emphasises a higher percentage of sex trafficking.

    Then again the whole debacle of trafficking is in itself muddied by what is really meant by trafficking. Someone who we think is abused by Western standards may well see their situation as an improvement or an opportunity to improve their situation in the future.

  5. Stephen Paterson
    28 October, 2010

    Yes. Logically, significantly more people are trafficked than would regard themselves as victims, or at least, who, on balance, would want to reverse the outcomes. But the Protocol states (I think rightly) that the consent of a trafficked adult is irrelevant if any of the means element of the Palermo formula (ie fraud, coercion, deceipt etc) have been used.

    UK law ignores the means element. Ten years after signing the protocol, we haven’t even got the right legislation in place yet, for all our silly AAA ratings in US TIPS reports.

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This entry was posted on 25 October, 2010 by in Uncategorized.
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