Sex-trafficking measure clears House, Senate

The House & Senate

The House and Senate Thursday night approved two separate bills to strengthen the law against sex-trafficking minors.

The House, by a vote of 66-to-0, approved a bill (H-5661 Sub A) introduced by Rep. Joanne M. Giannini, D-Providence.

The Senate voted 34 to 0 to approve a separate bill (S-605 Sub A) introduced by Sen. Rhoda E. Perry, D-Providence.

One identical bill must pass both the House and Senate to become law.

“At least we have a chance it will pass,” Kimberly Harris, co-chair of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Human Trafficking, said after the vote. “I ‘m grateful that both bills passed today … and I hope the same spirit of compromise will continue when the leadership combines both bills.”

The two bills — both designed to strengthen the 2007 law against sex-trafficking — differ in several key respects.

Giannini’s bill covers trafficking of forced labor for work that doesn’t involve sex.
Perry’s bill includes a provision — not included in Rep. Gianinni’s bill — that would create a trafficking-in-persons task force to develop an assessment protocol for identifying victims of trafficking.

The task force, to be headed by the Rhode Island Commission on Women, would include members of law enforcement, representatives from the state health and labor departments, as well as victims’ advocates and the director of the National Association of Social Workers.

source: http://newsblog.projo.com/2009/06/sex-trafficking.html

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Published in: on June 26, 2009 at 9:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1591 – Sex Trafficking of Children by Force, Fraud, or Coercion

Title 18, U.S.C., Section 1591 – Sex Trafficking of Children by Force, Fraud, or Coercion

This statute makes it unlawful to knowingly place a person (or profiting from a person placed) in a commercial sex act, where the person is either a minor, or their services are engaged by force, fraud, or coercion.

Punishment varies depending on the age of the person placed into the act as follows: if the person is under the age of fourteen years at the time of the commission of the unlawful act, the punishment varies from a fine to imprisonment for any term of years, or both; if the person was between the ages of fourteen and eighteen, the punishment varies from a fine to imprisonment of up to forty years, or both.

Hate Crimes – Color of Law/Police Misconduct – Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances
Involuntary Servitude/Slavery and Human Trafficking – Civil Rights Statutes

source: FBI.com

Published in: on June 25, 2009 at 11:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Sex-trafficking bill on hold for changes

06-25-09 Sen. Paul Jabour, sponsor of a bill which would criminalize indoor prostitution, in the Senate chamber.Sen. Paul Jabour, sponsor of a bill which would criminalize indoor prostitution, in the Senate chamber.

A Senate vote on a bill to strengthen the law against sex-trafficking of minors was postponed Wednesday night as lawmakers tried to negotiate last-minute changes.

Senate spokesman Greg Pare said that senators needed more time to amend the bill (S-605 A) introduced by Sen. Rhoda E. Perry, D-Providence, to include language that would reference a separate bill aimed at making indoor prostitution illegal.

Meanwhile, Sen. Paul V. Jabour, D-Providence, said he was waiting for an amended version of his bill to be drafted so the Senate Judiciary Committee could vote it out in time to reach the Senate floor Wednesday night.

Adoption-records bill shelved

A Senate committee, after a brief hearing Wednesday, decided to hold for further study a bill that would allow adult adoptees to obtain copies of their birth certificates if their birth parents approve.

The measure, introduced by Sen. Rhoda E. Perry, a Providence Democrat, originally would have granted adoptees, at age 21, unfettered access to their birth certificates. But it was amended later to require the birth parents’ approval for releasing any information.

At least eight states, among them Maine and New Hampshire, open birth information to adoptees.

But in Rhode Island, adoption records are sealed and can be opened only by court order.

The Rhode Island Adoption Coalition for Equality (TRACE) has long championed such legislation, but it does not support this bill as amended

“Even if it’s only two percent of adoptees that don’t get access to their birth records because of this amendment, what do you say to those two percent? How can you tell one adoptee they can have this information, but that another can’t?” said John Green, of TRACE.

At the hearing held by the Health and Human Services Committee, which Perry chairs, no one testified for the measure and three members of TRACE spoke against it.

Stiffer DUI penalties

The Senate on Wednesday unanimously approved a bill, introduced by Democrat Leonidas P. Raptakis of Coventry, that would stiffen penalties for drunken driving. The measure now goes to the House, which is already considering a slightly different version.

Driving under the influence, death resulting, would bring a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and $20,000 in fines; the current maximum is 20 years and $20,000.

Driving under the influence, serious bodily injury resulting, would carry a maximum of 20 years and $10,000; currently the maximum is 10 years and $5,000.

Driving under the influence, personal injury resulting, could bring two years in prison; currently there is no maximum penalty prescribed.

3-knockdown rule is KO’d

The Senate on Wednesday voted to repeal a law that requires a boxing referee to end the match if one of the contenders suffers three knockdowns in a single round. The measure now goes to the governor. Only Rhode Island and Arkansas still impose the three-knockdown rule, according to Sen. Francis J. Maher Jr., R-Charlestown, who sponsored the Senate version of the bill.

Mixed martial arts OK’d

Mixed martial arts fighting moved one step closer to becoming a state-approved sport after the state Senate approved legislation on Wednesday regulating the increasingly popular form of hand-to-hand combat that combines elements of wrestling, boxing and street fighting. The measure now goes to the governor.

The bill, The Senate version of which was sponsored by Dominick J. Ruggerio, D-Providence, designates the Department of Business Regulation’s Division of Racing and Athletics as the regulatory agency for the sport, which is already legal in Massachusetts.

Also known as ultimate fighting or “cage fighting,” mixed martial arts grew in popularity beginning in the 1990s. Critics have condemned it as “human cockfighting.”

Said Sen. Edward J. O’Neill, I-Lincoln: “I find it interesting that you put two dogs in a cage, and it’s illegal. But you put two people in a cage and it’s legal in some states.”

Sen. Maryellen Goodwin, D-Providence, responded: “It’s not as vicious as it might sound.”

Bill on judge-screening panel fails

The Senate, after heated debate on Wednesday, rejected a proposal to require that Judicial Nominating Commission members step down immediately after their four-year terms expire.

The measure was sponsored by Sen. James C. Sheehan, D-Narragansett. While the nine members of the board — which recommends judgeship candidates to the governor — are restricted to one term, Sheehan said many are serving well past the end of their terms because the governor has not appointed successors. The lack of new members, he argued, has contributed to delays in vacancies in the state judiciary.

But other senators said Sheehan’s proposal would run afoul of the state Constitution, which stipulates that officials — elected or appointed — serve until replaced.

Roberti confirmed for PUC

The Senate on Wednesday confirmed Governor Carcieri’s appointment of Paul J. Roberti, a former assistant attorney general, to the Public Utilities Commission.

Roberti, former chief of the attorney general’s Public Utilities Regulatory Unit, succeeds Robert Holbrook, who did not seek another six-year term on the PUC.

Carcieri, in nominating Roberti, said he would “bring a stronger advocacy and representation of the interests of ratepayers and citizens.”

These General Assembly news items were compiled by staff writers Philip Marcelo and Lynne Arditi.

source:http://www.projo.com/news/content/BOXING_DIGEST_25_06-25-09_T2ERB04_v24.38abe6c.html

Published in: on June 25, 2009 at 10:05 am  Leave a Comment  
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Senate to vote on bills against prostitution, sex-trafficking


The Senate is expected to vote this week on two bills designed to strengthen the laws against prostitution and sex-trafficking.

A measure (S-596) introduced by Sen. Paul V. Jabour, D-Providence, to make indoor prostitution a crime “will come up for a vote this session,” Senate President M. Teresa Paiva Weed pledged Tuesday.

Rhode Island is the only place in the country, other than certain counties in Nevada, where indoor prostitution is not a crime.

“I believe that law enforcement sees this as a loophole and we’re addressing this,” Paiva Weed said.

Jabour’s bill is awaiting a vote in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

A separate bill, introduced in the House by Rep. Joanne M. Giannini, D-Providence, passed the Senate in May by a vote of 62 to 8.

Meanwhile, the Senate also is expected to take up legislation as early as Wednesday to strengthen the laws against sex-trafficking in minors.

That measure (S-605 Sub A), introduced by Sen. Rhoda E. Perry, D-Providence, had been scheduled for a vote on the Senate floor Tuesday but was postponed to give senators a chance to review some last-minute changes.

Efforts to amend the 2007 human trafficking law initially drew broad support among a diverse coalition that included law enforcement, advocates for victims and church groups. But in recent weeks, some of the legislation’s supporters — among them the Rhode Island State Police — have raised concerns about the language in the Senate version of the bill.

The state police superintendent, Col. Brendan P. Doherty, said the original Senate bill included requirements for training that would be time-consuming and expensive. But the new version introduced Tuesday stipulates only that it is up to law enforcement to ensure necessary training.

One of the House bill’s vocal supporters, University of Rhode Island Prof. Donna Hughes, e-mailed a letter to senators last Monday urging them to reject the Senate bill.

“Of course, I am opposed to sex trafficking,” she said in the e-mail, “but this bill comes loaded with loopholes and complex provisions that will create more problems than it solves.”

Hughes wrote that the bill “creates a loophole for buyers of sex, if they are under 21.”

The amended Senate bill states: “Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as preventing the prosecution of ‘victims’ or ‘customers’ that are personally involved in the management, organization or proprietary ownership of an enterprise …”

Kimberly Harris, cochairwoman of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Human Trafficking, said Tuesday she was “optimistic that both the House and Senate will agree on the most comprehensive victim-centered bill.”

Harris said the coalition had hoped the bill would also cover trafficking for forced labor, but that provision was removed from the Senate version.

A separate sex-trafficking bill (H-5661) introduced by Representative Giannini, which included a provision to cover forced labor, also is pending before the House but no vote has been scheduled.

source: http://www.projo.com/news/content/PROSTITUTION_DIGEST24_06-24-09_08EQTKR_v9.396a73a.html

Published in: on June 24, 2009 at 9:14 pm  Leave a Comment  

New report says 12 million trapped in some form of human trafficking

sex traffickingEfforts to combat global human trafficking suffered setbacks last year, in part because a bad global economy left more people vulnerable to traffickers, a new report says.

The U.S. Department of State released its 2009 Trafficking in Persons report June 16. The annual report documents the efforts of foreign governments to eliminate the most severe forms of human trafficking.

The U.S. government defines severe human trafficking as the use of force, coercion or fraud to obtain labor or induce a commercial sex act.

Kristyn Williams, interim associate director of the anti-trafficking services program for the U.S. bishop’s Migration and Refugee Services, suggested the trafficking report could be “an effective tool” in the prevention of human trafficking worldwide.

According to the report, an estimated 12.3 million people are currently trapped in some form of modern-day slavery.

The report cited the international economic crisis as a driving factor in the rise of human trafficking. Rising unemployment rates and falling incomes have left desperate workers vulnerable to manipulation by human traffickers, particularly in underdeveloped countries.

Increased international demand for cheap goods also has contributed to the rise in human trafficking, the report said.

It highlighted some positive developments in the effort to combat human trafficking. In 2008, 26 acts of anti-trafficking legislation were introduced or amended worldwide.

The 2009 report contains assessments of more than 175 countries. Foreign governments are evaluated on their effectiveness in prosecuting traffickers, protection of victims of trafficking and prevention of further trafficking violations.

Each nation is placed on one of three tiers based on the results of these evaluations.

Those in compliance with the U.S. government’s minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking are considered first-tier nations.

Second-tier nations are those that have made significant strides toward meeting the minimum standards, and third-tier nations are those that are making no effort to combat trafficking. Nations ranked in the third-tier may be subject to economic sanctions.

The report ranked 28 nations in the top tier, down from 29 in 2008. The number of nations in the third tier rose from 14 to 17.

Speaking during the release of the report, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton emphasized the importance of recognizing and combating both labor trafficking and sex trafficking.

Clinton’s comments drew praise from Williams.

“I was glad to hear Secretary of State Clinton recognize the importance of labor trafficking as well as sex trafficking,” Williams said in a June 18 interview with Catholic News Service.

Williams stated that of the 1,037 human trafficking victims aided by the bishops’ program from April 2006 to May 2009 roughly two-thirds were victims of labor trafficking.

source: http://thecatholicspirit.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2043&Itemid=33

Published in: on June 24, 2009 at 8:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Sex Trafficking Fact Sheet

Sex Trafficking Fact Sheet

(Adapted from Department of Health and Human Services Rescue and Restore Campaign. Used with permission.)
FIGHTING HUMAN TRAFFICKING RESOURCE

Sex trafficking is a modern-day form of slavery in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act is under the age of 18 years. Enactment of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) made sex trafficking a serious violation of Federal law. The TVPA also recognizes labor trafficking, which is discussed in a separate fact sheet.

As defined by the TVPA, the term ‘commercial sex act’ means any sex act on account of which anything of value is given to or received by any person.

The TVPA recognizes that traffickers use psychological and well as physical coercion and bondage, and it defines coercion to include: threats of serious harm to or physical restraint against any person; any scheme, plan, or pattern intended to cause a person to believe that failure to perform an act would result in serious harm to or physical restraint against any person; or the abuse or threatened abuse of the legal process.

Victims of Sex Trafficking and What They Face

Victims of sex trafficking can be women or men, girls or boys, but the majority are women and girls. There are a number of common patterns for luring victims into situations of sex trafficking, including:

o A promise of a good job in another country
o A false marriage proposal turned into a bondage situation
o Being sold into the sex trade by parents, husbands, boyfriends
o Being kidnapped by traffickers

Sex traffickers frequently subject their victims to debt-bondage, an illegal practice in which the traffickers tell their victims that they owe money (often relating to the victims’ living expenses and transport into the country) and that they must pledge their personal services to repay the debt.

Sex traffickers use a variety of methods to “condition” their victims including starvation, confinement, beatings, physical abuse, rape, gang rape, threats of violence to the victims and the victims’ families, forced drug use and the threat of shaming their victims by revealing their activities to their family and their families’ friends.

Victims face numerous health risks. Physical risks include drug and alcohol addiction; physical injuries (broken bones, concussions, burns, vaginal/anal tearings); traumatic brain injury (TBI) resulting in memory loss, dizziness, headaches, numbness; sexually transmitted diseases (e.g., HIV/AIDS, gonorrhea, syphilis, UTIs, pubic lice); sterility, miscarriages, menstrual problems; other diseases (e.g., TB, hepatitis, malaria, pneumonia); and forced or coerced abortions.

Psychological harms include mind/body separation/disassociated ego states, shame, grief, fear, distrust, hatred of men, self-hatred, suicide, and suicidal thoughts. Victims are at risk for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) – acute anxiety, depression, insomnia, physical hyper-alertness, self-loathing that is long-lasting and resistant to change (complex-PTSD).

Victims may also suffer from traumatic bonding – a form of coercive control in which the perpetrator instills in the victim fear as well as gratitude for being allowed to live.

Types of Sex Trafficking

Victims of trafficking are forced into various forms of commercial sexual exploitation including prostitution, pornography, stripping, live-sex shows, mail-order brides, military prostitution and sex tourism.

Victims trafficked into prostitution and pornography are usually involved in the most exploitive forms of commercial sex operations. Sex trafficking operations can be found in highly-visible venues such as street prostitution, as well as more underground systems such as closed-brothels that operate out of residential homes. Sex trafficking also takes place in a variety of public and private locations such as massage parlors, spas, strip clubs and other fronts for prostitution. Victims may start off dancing or stripping in clubs and then be coerced into situations of prostitution and pornography.

Assistance for Victims of Sex Trafficking

When victims of trafficking are identified, the U.S. government can help them adjust their immigration status, and obtain support and assistance in rebuilding their lives in the United States through various programs. By certifying victims of trafficking, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) enables trafficking victims who are non-U.S. citizens to receive Federally funded benefits and services to the same extent as a refugee. Victims of trafficking who are U.S. citizens do not need to be certified to receive benefits. As U.S. citizens, they may already be eligible for many benefits.

Through HHS, victims can access benefits and services including food, health care and employment assistance. Certified victims of trafficking can obtain access to services that provide English language instruction and skills training for job placement. Since many victims are reluctant to come forward for fear of being deported, one of HHS’ most important roles is to connect victims with non-profit organizations prepared to assist them and address their specific needs. These organizations can provide counseling, case management and benefit coordination.

If you think you have come in contact with a victim of human trafficking, call the Trafficking Information and Referral Hotline at 1.888.3737.888. This hotline will help you determine if you have encountered victims of human trafficking, will identify local resources available in your community to help victims, and will help you coordinate with local social service organizations to help protect and serve victims so they can begin the process of restoring their lives. For more information on human trafficking visit http://www.acf.hhs.gov/trafficking.

source: http://www.urbanministry.org/wiki/sex-trafficking-fact-sheet

Published in: on June 22, 2009 at 10:45 am  Comments (2)  
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CAMPAIGN FOR SEX TRAFFICKING VICTIMS LAUNCHED

Jessica Foster
Jessie Foster

A campaign to support young Africans who have been abused through sex trafficking in London will be launched tomorrow.

Africans Unite Against Child Abuse (AFRUCA) will launch its child trafficking project on Tuesday at the County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, London, as part of a series of events taking place to celebrate the charity’s eighth anniversary.

The campaign is being funded by Comic Relief, which has donated £118,832 to AFRUCA over three years. The charity says the cash will help it expand its support to reach more trafficking victims in London and the South-east.

The trafficking project will support and assist at least 20 young survivors each year, helping them secure housing and financial support from local authorities and other agencies with the aim of reducing homelessness and poverty.

In addition to providing legal support for UK citizenship, the project will also provide counselling and survivors’ friendship groups in a bid to heal the psychological scars of long-term abuse.

The launch event, which also plans to examine the causes and impact of child trafficking, aims to come up with ways for the community to help combat the problem.

Debbie Ariyo, AFRUCA director, said: “Child trafficking from Africa is a growing problem across the UK.

“It is a fact that children are trafficked into the country by their own people and are also exploited by people in their own communities.

“Our project is a community response to what is a terrible problem affecting many African children and young people across London.

“With this new grant from Comic Relief, we hope to help survivors of trafficking rebuild their lives and ensure members of the African community can gain the knowledge necessary to intervene successfully when they come across victims of trafficking.

“In celebrating our eighth year of supporting African children and promoting their safety and wellbeing, we wish to acknowledge the overwhelming goodwill and support we have received over the years from our various partners, and most importantly the children, young people and the families that make our work worthwhile.”

Since 2001, AFRUCA has campaigned against the abuse and exploitation of African children.

Tomorrow’s event will run from 11.00am to 2.00pm. For information on other events or to book your place at the trafficking launch, contact Cherifa Atoussi on cherifa@afruca.org or 0844 660 8607.

source: http://www.communitynewswire.press.net/article.jsp?id=5894003

Published in: on June 22, 2009 at 10:20 am  Leave a Comment  
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U.S. tells Canada Harsher sentences needed for sex traffickers

Photobucket
Canada has the laws needed to prosecute groups that lure victims from aboard to work in the sex trade, but the penalties dished out by the courts are lax, says a U.S. report on human trafficking.

The annual report issued Tuesday by the U.S. State Department also notes criticism by non-governmental organizations that say there isn’t enough communication among law enforcement when it comes to human trafficking.

“Canada’s law enforcement efforts reportedly suffer from a lack of co-ordination between the national government and provincial and local authorities, which prosecuted most human trafficking cases.”

The report cited Benjamin Perrin, a University of British Columbia law professor and leading expert on human trafficking, as one of nine worldwide “heroes” in the fight against the modern-day form of slavery.

Perrin told a news conference at the U.S. Consulate in Vancouver that the real heroes are the survivors – often young girls – who have had to defend themselves against a system that doesn’t recognize the full extent of their suffering.

He said police are aware of a national human trafficking network in Canada and agrees with the report that there’s no national action plan to deal with the issue.

Traffickers have been known to prey on young girls in group homes and in one case a female targeted a woman from a shelter, getting her hooked on drugs and putting her to work in the sex trade, Perrin said.

He said aboriginal girls in some parts of Canada are also easy prey, calling the situation “very, very troubling.”

“Today I’m calling on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to announce that he will enact a national action plan to combat human trafficking to follow up on the measures that his government has already taken,” Perrin said.

“It’s at this stage that we really need to get serious about this problem to protect victims, prosecute offenders and prevent human trafficking from continuing to flourish in our country.”

Perrin said that along with women who are forced to sell themselves in the sex trade, traffickers are coercing foreign men to work as labourers, especially in the Prairies.

In the Toronto area, men from the Philippines have been put to work in horrendous conditions after being duped into thinking they would be employed in other jobs, Perrin said.

“Vancouver police say there are thousands of foreign nationals in the sex trade,” he said. “How many of them are here voluntarily, how many of them are here subject to force, fraud, coercion, threats, debt bondage? That is much more difficult for them to identify.”

“So clearly a very vulnerable pool of individuals need to get the message that there is help available, that they do have rights in Canada.”

In 2006, Perrin’s advocacy work and research led the federal government to start granting human trafficking victims temporary residence permits for up to six months, along with medical help.

The top four source countries for victims being recruited to Canada are China, Romania, the Philippines and Moldova, Perrin said, adding that so far, there hasn’t been a single conviction involving anyone from overseas.

“That’s a really serious omission,” he said. “It requires proactive police work as well as support and assistance for victims. . . There’s no doubt about that but they clearly need more resources.”

The U.S. State Department’s report also recommended tougher prosecution of Canadians suspected of committing child sex tourism crimes overseas.

Perrin said he was in Cambodia almost 10 years ago and noticed Canadian men carrying back packs adorned with maple leafs and bragging about their sexual exploits but Canada has failed to take much action to deal with the problem.

“Canada has got a really black eye,” he said. In some countries, people with convictions for sex offences are required to notify their government of their intention to travel abroad, but Canada has no such requirement.

Over the past year, five Canadians were convicted under the Criminal Code’s provisions against human trafficking, the first convictions since the law went into effect in 2005.

Another 12 anti-trafficking prosecutions were before provincial courts as of April, involving 15 accused offenders.

The U.S. State Department’s report gauged the progress of 175 countries’ efforts to deal with human trafficking. It placed 52 countries and territories mainly in Africa, Asia and the Middle East on notice that they may face sanctions unless their records improve.

The report recommended Canada give police more clout to investigate trafficking offences before they happen.

“(Non-governmental organizations) criticize the government’s law enforcement investigation efforts for not being proactive, particularly in terms of searching for victims and trafficking activity,” the report says.

Sgt. Marie-Claude Arsenault of the RCMP’s Human Trafficking National Co-ordination Centre said the Mounties’ liaison officers stationed overseas train police in investigation techniques and victims’ needs.

“I was in Cambodia a few months ago, training police on human trafficking,” she said.

Photobucket

source: http://tinyurl.com/m42s7r

Victims of Human Trafficking in DC still waiting for justice and support

prostitution
The room was full, excitement began to rise and everyone was poised and ready with excitement and anticipation. There was no big star to enter, no big firm to be reveled, no dignitary to speak, but something even bigger…something that has long been awaited and is long over due. The room was abuzz with energy and excitement for the public hearing on the DC legislation against human trafficking.

The Prohibition Against Human Trafficking Act of 2009 (number 18-70) would make human trafficking/modern slavery a crime, the legislation would cover both labor and sex trafficking, with appropriately severe penalties. Additionally it will provide for critically needed assistance to victims, including access to a victim advocate to develop a safety plan, easier access to Crime Victims’ Compensation and it would allow civil cases to be brought by a victim against his/her trafficker. If passed the act would also mandate that the District publish long over due statistical data on human trafficking/modern slavery, which would see that vital information is given to both citizens and authorities, allowing them to better respond to the specifics of the crime of human trafficking/modern slavery. In addition, the bill criminalizes the possession of child pornography.

Why is the passing of this act so important? Modern slavery, or human trafficking, is a problem that plagues us right here at home. There is no country immune to this disease of power and greed, which binds some 27 million people around the world, including the US and our Nations Capital. The average of entry into prostitution in the United States is 12-13 years-old, and DC streets ranked among the top 14 cities for human trafficking by the FBI, are see their fair share of young victims each night.

Victims in the Capital and across the US include both U.S. citizens and foreign nationals, who are forced, or coerced into providing services in; domestic servitude, labor in various service industries, or commercial sex. The victims of these horrendous crimes live a life of abuse, demoralization, finding escape a distant dream and hope is often all but a mysterious word few ever feel they have. Daily life as a modern slave includes isolation, verbal threats, beatings, rapes, mental abuse, and various forms of debt bondage.

The US State department estimates that some 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders each year and about 80 percent of them are female and at least 50% are children. The numbers given by the State Department do not included the millions of victims which are trafficked with in countries borders, including the United States. The US government has stated that there are some 17,500 victims of sex trafficking in the United States each year, however all of these government figures are well understated and the true number of victims is unknown.

Sadly the anticipation in the room continued to build as we patiently waited for over an hour, only to find the hearing was canceled and would be rescheduled. While today we did not have a chance to use our voices for those silenced by the often invisible chains of modern slavery, we will have our moment and it is not one to be taken lightly, so please stay tuned for news of the next hearing date and come out and join us. In the meantime you can write you Council Member and voice your concern for the passing of this long overdue act to protect those victimized by all forms of human trafficking in DC.

All cases are unique, however please see the following two cased provided by Polaris project which depict typical examples of human trafficking, adapted from real cases in Washington D.C. For related stories, please see my other posts on Child Trafficking for the Foreign Policy Association. For more information please the following resource pages on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Links, Human Trafficking and Slavery Related Movies and Documentaries, and Slavery and Trafficking Related Books for more information.

If you have reason to suspect that someone is a victim of human trafficking, please call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline on 1-888-373-7888. Multilingual call specialists are on standby 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All calls are confidential.

source:http://tinyurl.com/ns7kpj

Published in: on June 20, 2009 at 8:50 am  Leave a Comment  
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Unidentified White Male

The Doe Network:
Case File 96UMFL
Unidentified Young Male
Photograph of Possible Victim

Unidentified White Male A photograph of this boy was found on June 15, 1989 in Port St. Joe, Florida.

Vital Statistics

* Estimated age: 12 years old
* Approximate Height and Weight: 4’0″
* Distinguishing Characteristics: Brown hair; blue eyes.

Case History
On June 15, 1989, a Polaroid photo of this boy, bound and gagged in the back of a van, was found in a Port St. Joe, FL convenience store parking lot by a customer. The lower part of the face of the child is reconstructed. The tape was on his face from below the nose to the point of the jaw.
The photo also showed an unidentified girl, also bound. The photo was found where a white Toyota cargo van with no windows had previously been parked.
Investigators are still trying to ascertain the boy’s identity, which would allow them to close the case or investigate further.
There have been speculations that the girl in the photo is Tara Calico who disappeared from New Mexico in 1988.

Investigators
If you have any information concerning this case, please contact:
Port St. Joe Police Department
850-229-8265

Source Information: Florida Department Of Law Enforcement
doenetwork.org

Published in: on June 19, 2009 at 10:30 am  Leave a Comment  
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