Posts tagged human trafficking
"Ridge Runners" - What it Was Like to See Human Trafficking Happening in My Small Town

The film Ridge Runners follows the investigation of a missing twelve-year-old girl, led by Detective Rachel Willow. At first, Willow and her community are doubtful that anything beyond a runaway-child case is possible in their peaceful town, but as the investigation continues, Willow finds the case is much more complicated than it appears on the surface.

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How to use your anger to fight with LOVE

Sometimes when an injustice is too great, it can be easy to use whatever motivation calls on your heart to dive headfirst into the fight against it. If a house is on fire, it doesn’t matter if you are a trained fireman or just a regular passerby with a bucket of water - everyone who can help, should. However, if we are looking to fight the long-term battle without burning out or losing hope, we have to check our motivations first. Rather than coming from a place of anger, hatred or even despair, our desire to fight for justice should come from a place of love.

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What I Learned about Human Trafficking from a Sci-Fi Sex Worker

When I streamed the 2002-2003 Joss Whedon series Firefly about ten years ago, I understood the spaceship crew that smuggled goods to maintain their independence from an inegalitarian interplanetary government, but I was uncomfortable with the presence of a sex worker among them. Inara Serra held the title of Companion: a state-licensed, guild-trained, freelancing sex worker. She leased a private shuttle on the ship Serenity and shared in the crew’s life on the outskirts of the realm. I was grateful to have my prejudice challenged and to learn to respect the basic human dignity of a woman whose chosen career path was not one I would choose for myself.

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A 2nd Cup - More Than A Coffee Shop

A 2nd Cup is not your average cup of joe, or as its website boasts: “It’s more than a cafe. It’s coffee with a cause.” A 2nd Cup is a 501(c)(3) non-profit coffee shop fighting human trafficking in Houston, Texas, one cup of coffee at a time. A unique combination of business and philanthropy, A 2nd Cup truly offers a life-changing cup of coffee; using its profits to fight against human trafficking. 

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The Struggle With Stranger Danger

Growing up, I was convinced I needed to worry about random people approaching me, but what I’ve since learned is that only 28% of perpetrators of sexual assault are actually strangers, and the “Romeo pimp” is much more common today in cases of human trafficking than the “guerilla pimp.” This means that it is really those that we love who we need to be able to stand up against.

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"Renting Lacy:" A Rainy Day Reading Recommendation

Do you ever find yourself wondering what book you should read next? Well, look no further, I recommend making yourself a cup of tea and settling in with a fuzzy blanket on a rainy day to take a crack at a page-turner written by Linda Smith, a U.S. Representative who founded Shared Hope International. The book is titled, “Renting Lacy, A Story of America’s Prostituted Children,” and it covers the clandestine subject that does not get nearly enough coverage: human trafficking of the United States of America’s children.

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What Hollywood doesn't tell you about human trafficking

I’ve seen several movies depicting sex trafficking in different ways, but the common factor is that they all depict it in a manner that causes shock and intrigue, yet still remains distant from the reality of the issue. Whether it’s depicting a woman who has to work on the streets and approach customers to make money for her pimp, or a dark portrayal of women being auctioned off to wealthy men, it all depicts sex-trafficking in somewhat of a glamorous manner.

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“The Face of Human Trafficking:" A TED Talk Review

After viewing the TED Talk, “The Face of Human Trafficking,” which Megan Rheinschild, the Victim-Witness Assistance Program Director for the Santa Barbara District Attorney’s office, delivered last year at a TEDx conference, I was surprised at how well her use of emotional appeal drove the audience to listen to the educational concerns of trafficking. It helped me think strongly about what any ordinary individual can do to prevent sexual abuse in minors.

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"Food Chains" unveils the true cost of fresh food

Food Chains calls us to be a part of the stories of the many hands that go into our fresh produce by not being passive, silent, or ignoring the suffering that they experience. We already are a part of this system that exploits, but we also are a part of a community that can see change happen for the most vulnerable populations of our society.

So, how can we do this?

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Is it better to buy locally or globally?

If I were to have you take a survey that asked you where you buy your products, what would your answers be? Do you buy primarily from local vendors––small boutiques, farms, family-owned businesses––or do you buy products made abroad? Do you find yourself shopping on Amazon for the cutest (and cheapest) styles, or would you rather go to a store around the block from your home? Do you include a mix of both? The deeper question is, which is better?

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Buyers of trafficking victims can be anyone. Here is why we need to hold them accountable.

The law of supply and demand requires both a buyer and a seller in order for a transaction to occur. The same applies in the sex industry.

We’ve already discussed the typical demographic of sex traffickers––romantic partners, deceitful bosses, and anyone that has convinced victims that they can be trusted––but what about buyers of sex? Who are these people that purchase other people for their own greedy, lustful desires?

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Fight & Flight: How Delta is Combating Trafficking

Human trafficking is rife in the travel industry, with airports serving as common hubs for the transport of people for exploitation. Between 2011 and 2017, the National Human Trafficking Hotline received reports of 269 cases of human trafficking which referenced intersections with airlines or airports. Within the last seven years, Delta Airlines has taken action, realizing the role that airlines can play in the fight to end human trafficking.

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The Link Between LGBTQ Youth and Human Trafficking

The United Nations reports that nearly 1.8 million children (individuals under the age of 18) are trafficked into the global sex trade each year. The children enslaved in the human trafficking industry face endless abuse, discrimination, and neglect as traffickers prey on their naiveté and innocence. The numbers of children affected by the sex industry are even more staggering for the LGBTQ community (those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, or questioning). LGBTQ youth are disproportionately affected by violence and stigmatization, making them more susceptible to the coercive influences of human trafficking.

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Social Media: Making Targeting Easier for Human Traffickers

In our current digital age, social media makes the world go round. There are so many online outlets that are used in order for us to remain in contact with our friends and family like: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. According to the Polaris Project, the internet has dramatically reshaped how we buy and sell things, including each other.

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He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not: The Lover Boy Scenario

He is everything she has ever wanted. Until he’s not. He tells her that she owes him for all of the nice dinners, clothing, jewelry, and their apartment’s rent. He tells her that she has to go inside, give herself up to paying men, and bring him the cash. He threatens to hurt her parents and her little sister if she doesn’t. She is confused and trapped, but she shuffles her feet through the front door, and then the bedroom door, and then her dress is slid up and there’s another man on top of her. It happens so fast. Just a moment later, she’s back in the car with $350 rolled up in her hand. And she and the love of her life drive away.

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Human trafficking does not discriminate: What I learned about human trafficking in my county

Riverside County, the fourth largest out of all fifty-eight counties in the state of California, is home to approximately 2.4 million people. Recently, it became an increasingly popular place of residence for its convenience to places like: Big Bear Mountains, Palm Springs desert area, the Southern California beach cities, and Los Angeles. Known for its centralized location, Riverside County seems like the place to be.

What could ever be wrong?

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