Friday, April 19, 2013
Stop Human Trafficking in Thailand
BY LEXI BRADLEY
Target: Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra
Goal: Stop human trafficking in Thailand
Human trafficking is an international problem on a growing scale that affects millions of people each day. Thailand is particularly notorious for its high volume of human trafficking. It is estimated that eight billion dollars were generated from human trafficking in the last year alone. The term “human trafficking” is used to describe the experience of people who are “trafficked,” or transported, for the purpose of forced labor and/or sexual slavery. Usually those who find themselves in these horrific situations are vulnerable people who exist at the fringes of society. In Thailand, a portion of the victims are migrants from North Korea, China, Vietnam, and other neighboring countries. However, many victims are also Thai natives, and no matter what their country of origin, many victims are women and children.
What makes Thailand such a high risk country for human trafficking? Thailand is a transit nation for many individuals fleeing their native land. People pour into Thailand seeking refuge from poverty in North Korea, China, Vietnam, Pakistan, Burma and more. Although these citizens are seeking a better life, they enter into a nightmare as they are targeted and coerced into labor servitude and sexual slavery. Internal conflicts also put those native to Thailand at risk. Women and children who live in poverty often feel forced to sell themselves into enslavement in order to survive. The victims are forced into labor or prostitution either within Thailand or they are trafficked to other nations to do so.
Once a person finds themselves locked in the clutches of human trafficking, it is difficult to escape. Many victims are too terrified to contact authorities for fear that they will be killed by their captors. Others are afraid because they are immigrants who will be deported then severely punished in their native country, as Thailand does not offer residency to foreign victims of human trafficking. As a result, many victims of human trafficking live in a state of silent terror.
We must urge the Royal Government of Thailand to put a stop to human trafficking. The government needs to crack down on human traffickers and enact strict punishments for offenders. Officials must perform regular business inspections and identify potential trafficking locations. They must identify and punish corrupt officers who allow trafficking. Lastly, they must provide resources, education, and awareness campaigns both for those who are currently enslaved and those who are at risk.
Dear Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra,
Human trafficking in Thailand is a problem that affects hundreds of thousands of adults and children each year. Every day there are impoverished families feel they have no choice but to sell their children into slavery. Everyday there are also men and women who find themselves kidnapped and forced to perform forced labor or face sexual enslavement. Once these individuals are in the clutches of human traffickers there is little chance that they will escape unharmed. Last year it is estimated that human trafficking generated approximately eight billion dollars for gangs and dangerous criminals to benefit.
I am calling on you as Prime Minister to put a stop to human trafficking in Thailand. In order to tackle this complex issue, I am calling for the crack down and strict punishment of human traffickers and the corrupt police officers who support them. I am asking the government must perform regular inspections of businesses and identify current and potential trafficking locations. In addition, I am asking the government to provide resources, preventative education, and awareness campaigns to those who are currently enslaved and those who are at risk of becoming victims of human trafficking. Please make human trafficking your top priority and put an end to these atrocities.
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