Vidushi Shrivastava

      Most learn about slavery in elementary school. Children are taught about the triangular trade, a system that became the greatest asset for international commerce in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It is most infamous for transporting slaves across the transatlantic countries for forced labor. Gradually over time, the trade and use of slaves died down in the transatlantic countries. Slavery was abolished and wiped out in the United States in 1865. Or so children are taught.
      Human nature allows people to rely on the facts. So when we hear that slavery was abolished, we believe it. Human nature is also designed to keep people in their comfort zones, so people don’t introspect on the thought of slavery still existing, just underground.
Slavery became illegal more than a century ago, but it is not something that has curtailed.
      The modern incarnation of slavery is human trafficking, and it continues under non-government organizations. People are bought and sold into the black market market. This is one of the most profitable trades, second only under drugs. It grosses over 150 billion dollars annually.
Human trafficking however, is not limited to just forced labor. Sexual exploitation, forced prostitution, child marriage, involuntary domestic servitude and bonded labor are all considered to be human trafficking. Any work done against someone’s will for another man’s profit is considered human trafficking.
      It is illegal and completely against human rights, but it is still practiced. Over 21 million people in the world are caught in this web of monstrosity. Every year, thousands of men, women and children fall into the hands of traffickers.
Traffickers, or “facilitators”, are dangerous people who are masters at their game. Their operations often intersect or exist alongside legitimate businesses. Certain industries may enable, support, or facilitate human trafficking within a wide range of networking which include:
  • Hotels and Motels
  • Landlords
  • Labor brokers
  • Taxi and other driving services
  • Airlines, bus, and rail companies
  • Advertisers
  • Banks, other financial services companies
  • Massage parlors
      They target people who are in a delicate state of mind, who tend to be susceptible to being trafficked. This can be a cause of bereavement, losing a job, or even simply just having a rough day. Traffickers know how to talk to and handle vulnerable people. Being trafficked can lead to a myriad of mental illnesses, but having them in the first place can also lead to one being trafficked. Traffickers shower potential victims with compliments and offer them gifts to lure them in. The vast majority of this trade tends to be teenage girls. Traffickers brainwash and skew their recruits’ mental processes so heavily that the newly trafficked people are willing to do anything for their trafficker. They will lie time and time again to protect the both of them from the law. Their morals become something of the past, and they do not understand the difference between right and wrong.
      Their entire perception for everything shifts so much from what it used to be that when they are rescued, many have said that they miss their trafficker, a person who used and abused them. It takes them so much time to go back to the normalcy of what their life had once held. After the excruciating transition of going back to their lives, they face their own mind, the most treacherous part. They have to live each day knowing what happened to them and being traumatized and ashamed.
      Human trafficking is modern day slavery, a monstrosity. Click here to find out what you can do to prevent it.