Human Trafficking

Human Trafficking: Defining Modern Day Slavery

Sunday, January 11, is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Voices will run at least a few posts on the topic. The first order of business is to define the issue. Future posts will refer back to this formal definition.

For simplicity sake, here are the three key components that together constitute trafficking:
The action of: recruitment, transfer, harboring
By means of: coercion, use of force, deception, fraud
For the purpose of: sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery and slavery-like conditions

Here’s the formal definition:

In 2000, an internationally agreed upon definition of trafficking was developed as part of the UN Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime and more specifically its Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children. In this Protocol, “Trafficking in persons (is defined as) the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation includes, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs.”

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5 Responses to “Human Trafficking: Defining Modern Day Slavery”

  1. David George Montalvo Says:

    Thank you very much for this formal definition of slavery. This will be of great help in my studies while in seminary at Fuller Theological.

  2. Thomas Miskell Says:

    It upsets me to know that in this day and age such evil practices still exist in our world. The Catholic church does a wonderful job helping those in need and tackling corruption and should have more power to help[ this global problem we face.
    I do hope for a post with details of organisations we may join that allow us lay people to actively help with this issue. In the meantime my prayers go out to all those unfortunate people out there.

    God bless

  3. Suzanne Sims Says:

    Mr. Miskell mentions interest in organizations that work with the horror of human trafficking issue. UNANIMA is an NGO consisting of 18 congregations of women religious worldwide and representing 17,000 members. We are committed to stopping the demand for trafficking, particularly with women and children. We’d love to have your help. My Ursuline Community is a member and I am the current delegate to the Board of UNANIMA.
    God bless you.
    Sr. Suzanne Sims, OSU

  4. When you think prostitute, do you think criminal? « Kelsey Kastrava Says:

    […] there are thousands of women, in the U.S. believe it or not, that are blindly entered into the sex slave trade. As I have mentioned in previous blogs, they are lured in by deceitful men who promise them jobs in […]

  5. Michael Accorsi Says:

    It is essential that the TVPA, Trafficking Victims Protection Act is renewed this upcoming year, TBD.

    This law strengthens the enforcement and funds local law enforcement with federal funds to investigate and enforce labor, domestic and sex trafficking.

    Having worked on this issue over the past year, the problem is developing public awareness around this issue. People need to know its happening in their towns to take action and educate others. Provides a geographic map of reported trafficking incidents.

    The text of the TVPA is available here:

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