Monthly Archives: February 2011

Bride Trafficking in India

Article on Bride Trafficking

This article is about the tragic story of a Noor Jahan during her bride trafficking. Jahan was sold off to one husband who then sold her to another man. The first husband abused her sexually and physically. According to this article, Jahan called her second husband a “cruel man”. Jahan was so emotionally scared from the events during those marriages that she felt uncomfortable talking about her story.

Women who are victims of bride trafficking are not only exploited sexually, but may also become subject to labor or domestic slavery. According to this article, women are often sold on average between 4 to 10 times. The prices of  a bride may range from 7 thousand to 70 thousand . This price is dependent on the girl’s beauty and their sexual experience.

One of the highest affected religious groups is Muslim women. According to this article, 80% of the 100,00 victims of bride trafficking are Muslim. Muslim women also suffer from the Islamic belief you can only be married up to 4 times. This increases the difficulty to raise funds for Muslim women.

An activist group called Empower People works with disadvantaged women regardless of caste, class or religion who are victims or who fear being of violence including domestic violence and Trafficking or other type of slavery, and provide them shelter, proper counseling legal support and any other required.

“After rescuing the girl we provide post-trauma counseling if required and we see if her parents are ready to take her back. If not then we try to get her remarried or get employed some where depending upon her education level”, says Shafiqur Rahman Khan. Khan is the founder of Empower People.

Due to the fact I’m adopted from India, my heart really hurts for these women. I make a huge effort to remind myself what my life would have been like if I had grown up in India. I constantly thank God for my ability to choose who I marry, obtain an education and live in a “free” country.

At the bottom of this article, a few blogs were listed that were also about sex trafficking in India. Here are the one’s that I took great interest in:

Founder of Empower People, Shafiqur Rahman Khan\’s Blog

Campaign Against Bride Trafficking India


Mother forces 8 year old daughter into prostitution

Mother forcing child into prostitution

This article gives the personal account of a girl who was a victim of not only sex trafficking but also domestic trafficking

Sarah, the victim in this article, said she grew up being forced into prostitution by her mother. Her first account she remembers is at the age of 8. According to this article, her mother would close the doors and lock them while numerous men would rape her. Sarah stated she thinks one of those men did it twice in one night. After the men raped her, Sarah’s mom would collect cash from them. Sarah continued to endure this horrific lifestyle for four more years every Wednesday through Saturday.

Sarah did try to cry out for help. She snuck out of her house and told her friend’s parent who then called social services. Since Sarah’s mother posed a strong argument to the social worker’s accusations, the social worker didn’t believe Sarah’s story.

During Sarah’s high school career, she fell into heavy drug use and dropped out. She then started hanging out with the wrong crowd, and suffered more abuse.

She was saved during a hearing regarding her drug and prostitution charges. Instead of prison, the judge referred her to Cincinnati Union Bethel. Cincinnati Union Bethel is an institution that works to help former prostitutes and drug addicts start anew.

This article brings up an important point about trafficking.

Why are certain places (such as Ohio) more popular choices for trafficking victims?

Traffickers are extremely crafty in their crime. Ohio is an excellent choice for a trafficking hub because no matter where you are in the state you can exit within 2 hours time. That is an extremely valuable characteristic in a traffickers location. Their ability to re-locate quickly not only helps traffickers escape legal officials without leaving behind little evidence more easily but also helps them “do more business”.

Authorities in Ohio are now promoting the idea for communities to join together and become educated about human trafficking. Awareness will grant civilians the ability to identify and increase the number of victims rescued, as well as lower the amount of trafficking in Ohio.

2 women murdered in Guatemala everyday

2 women in Guatemala murdered everyday

This post was extremely insightful on the violence against women in Guatemala. According to the statistics of the United Nations in this article, Guatemala has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Drug Trafficking is HUGE problem which extends from Latin America all the way to U.S.. Trying to resolve to Guatemala’s crimes against women and establishing human rights is extremely difficult because they stem from different issues including the Civil War. Guatemala also has a male dominated society. Women are often treated as objects and not human beings. Since Guatemala has a patriarchal society, men often remain unpunished granting them the ability to freely abuse and murder women.  In 2008 an estimated 700 women were murdered. Along with abuse and femicide, trafficking is also an issue in Guatemala.

In April 2008, the “Femicide Law” was passed that outlawed violence against women. Hopefully, this will be the beautiful beginning to ending a horrible nightmare.

Poverty and Prostitution in the Philippines

Safehousing organization in the Phillipines

This article is about the courageous story of a group of nuns that travel through the streets in efforts to rescue victims of prostitution. The organization is called Immaculate Mary Queen of Heaven Missionaries. Sister Irene Baquiran, founded this organization in 1996.  This organization not only work to rescue victims but are also trying to end the cycle of poverty. They feel the cycle of poverty is one of the main determining factors causing prostitution.

During their mission they found the age of the prostitutes usually ranged anywhere from 15-20. Although most ranged in their mid to late teens, some victims were sometimes as young as age 8.

These victims were forced into having sex encounters as many as 10 times per night. They pay for these sex acts was an estimated $2 per customer. Some pimps would also addict their victims to drugs as well as drug them while they were performing sex acts.

I’m pleased to see an organization digging to the root of what is actually causing the crime of prostitution. You can close down brothels and rescue many victims, but the issue of poverty still exists and will continue to influence prostitution.

Please check out  Immaculate Mary Queen of Heaven Missionaries website if you wish to make a donation or want more information on their foundation.

documentary about sex slaves in India

documentary on sex slavery and kidnapping in India

This documentary left me speechless. As I listened to the different girls stories about their kidnapping, rapes and abuse I got emotional. What I learned from this documentary is that you must centralize your emotions so that changes can be made. Jyoti, was trafficked into Mumbai/Bombay. In this film she goes on a rescue mission and rescues 6 girls. One of those six girls then rescues another six on a future mission. I can only applaud their courage.

Another problem discussed in this documentary is health care. According to this film, 90% of the girls in the brothels of Mumbai suffer from HIV. In this film they also discuss girls in brothels easily go through 12-14 abortions. In the brothels girls are not given sufficient health care, rather a person who may have no professional training performs the procedure. Despite their medical condition after the procedure, girls are immediately forced back into work….with no break.

The celebration of this film was the advocacy taken by the survivors. They now inform communities of human rights, and emphasize they apply to children as well. Survivors also inform parents on how important it is to closely watch their children.

This website is for the safe housing project the survivors were taken to in Nepal. There are several pages on what human trafficking is, ways to identify it and prevent it. You can also make a donation to their organization as well.

Rise in trafficking in NC

This article discusses the rise in trafficking in N.C. The numbers of victims have risen in NC. A high percentage of these girls are coming from Latin American countries. After being tricked by their trafficker thinking they have a job waiting them here (or whatever lie the trafficker told them), they are held in isolation and threatened. The trafficker’s threats grant them the ability to control their victim. That control makes the victim think that there family could be harmed if they leave, or even going to the law enforcement is of no help. Whatever lie has been told, they endure a fearful and abusive lifestyle. Authorities in NC have noticed the growing industry, and are working on ways to identify it and arrest traffickers.

Rise in trafficking in NC

Interview with a former sex slave

This article was so insightful and heartbreaking. Marinela Badea, a 17 year old girl from Romania, gives her story and details during her time as a sex slave. She goes into great detail about how she was abused, the amount of men she had to sleep with as well as how she was kidnapped.

I got slightly emotional while reading this article. Her story inspired, motivated  and increased my determination to rescue victims. I often get frustrated because there are so many victims….and so little of me.

Article about Marinela Badea