Literature Review- Peer reviewed sources. Must address the following:
My main research question is: How does human trafficking threaten the stability communities within the United States and the stability of our Nation and what can be done differently to mitigate the effects of human trafficking? So that I am able to better answer the research question at hand, the following supplementary questions will also be used:
1. What impact does combating human trafficking at the local level have on national security?
2. Does human trafficking increase our threat of terrorism?
3. Will educating our citizens be the key to securing our nation?
4. What proposed changes are necessary to law to stabilize the security of our nation and stop human trafficking?
|Subject||Law and governance||Pages||7||Style||APA|
Human trafficking is the process of recruiting and move people most often by force, deception or coercion for the purposes of exploitation. Exploitation may include forced labor, sex work, and domestic work, construction, and agriculture (Cary et al., 2016). The federal law titled ‘Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000’defines human trafficking as act of exploiting a person or persons for labor or sex using “fraud coercion, or force” (Toney-Butler, Gossman, &Mittel, 2021). Trafficking in persons is also referred to as modern-day slavery and is considered as a crime across all 50 states under the international and federal laws (Toney-Butler et al., 2021).
Impact of Human Trafficking to Stability of Communities and the Nation
Human trafficking is pressing security, public health, and economic concern that transcends all social classes, races, gender, and demographics. No population is free from the prevalent threat of traffickers. Human traffickers are often driven by greed and the share of gains. They often prey upon the vulnerable persons/populations, are devoid of respect for human rights, and can damage the physical and psychological well-being of their victims (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Exploitation of victims of child trafficking occurs when the victims are not treated properly, when they do not receive appropriate renumeration for their labor, and when traffickers take advantage of the vulnerability of their victims to extract unfair profits from them (Gozdziak & Vogel, 2020).
A trafficker acts by recruiting potential persons to be trafficked, harbors them, offer transportation services, provides, or obtain an individual. Means such as fraud, coercion, and forces are utilized by the trafficker to compel the victim to provide labor, commercial sex acts, and other services. The federal law defines sex trafficking as the process of recruiting, hosting, transporting, provision, patronizing, obtaining, or soliciting of a person for the purposed of commercial sex acts, in which the commercial sex acts are induced by fraud, force, or coercion, or in which the individual induced to perform such acts are below 18 years of age. Trafficking increases the risk of exploitation of minors for commercial sex since they are vulnerable and can be easily manipulated and exploited (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Sex trafficking has been reported in some areas of the U.S. For example, sex trafficking in Ohio is considered one of the major components of the national sex trafficking network. Sex trafficking is tightly connected with human trafficking for domestic work (Chohaney, 2016).
Human trafficking can also lead to forced labor or servitude. Labor trafficking is defined as hosting, transporting, provision, or obtaining an individual or services or labor, through utilization of fraud, force, or coercion for the intent of subjecting the individual into involuntary servitude, debt bondage, peonage, or slavery. In trafficking of persons, force can involve torture, imprisonment, rape, or beatings, and may be physical or psychological (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Human trafficking is synonymous to modern day slavery. The term use of the term human trafficking to refer to modern day slavery makes to public to belief that slavery no longer exists (Bonilla & Mo, 2018).
Physical confinement is infrequent; however, invisible chains or constrains are applied in order to maintain control and power, just like in intimate partner violence. Invisible chains may include withholding pay, debt bondage, and maintaining possession of all forms of identification documents to develop an invisible bond between the victim and the trafficker or pimp (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Fraud may include false claims of a marriage, job, and promises of a better life or a family. Coercion may include debts, threats, or bondage, which help foster a climate of intimidation and fear. Coercion may comprise of abuse of the legal process (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Victims of human trafficking manifest with high prevalence of mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (Cary et al., 2016). Human trafficking can exacerbate crime and criminal activities from the community to the national level. Victims are often coerced to participate in crimes, which may land them in jail or detention centers (Toney-Butler et al., 2021).
Figure 1: Child Victims of Sexual Exploitation
Source: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. (2020).
Human Trafficking and Terrorism
Human trafficking can drive displacement, conflict, and undercut the ability of the international institutions to promote stability. Human tracking involves cross violation of human rights and encompass a range of illicit activities, including forced labor, sexual exploitation, forcible recruitment into military service or armed group, and organ removal (Council on Foreign Relations, 2019). Human trafficking is not only an affront to human dignity and rights, but also a security and criminal concern. It can fuel conflict by facilitating armed groups to expand their power, raise revenue, and expand their military capabilities. Human trafficking can destabilize communities, and thereby undermining development and exacerbating conflict (Council on Foreign Relations, 2019).
Migration may be the cause of terrorism (Helbling & Meierrieks, 2020). The United Nations Security Council has found that there is considerable relationship between human trafficking and terrorism as well as other transnational criminal activities. Trafficking has been identified as means employed by terrorists to raise funds for their terrorist activities (Huckerby, 2019). On the other hand, there is emphasis that terrorist groups often use human trafficking as a tool for recruitment. Female victims of terrorism are used as baits for attracting and retaining fighters. Besides, sex trafficking trade is a strategy for increasing financial flows and for strengthening influence. Sex trade can also be employed as a tool for destroying or controlling communities that are affected or involved in human trafficking (Huckerby, 2019). Trafficking in people, weapons, and money is largely carried-out by mafia groups or criminal gangs. Human trafficking is a lucrative means used by organized criminal groups and terrorists to fund their illicit activities (Seelke, 2016).
There are various examples on how human trafficking can benefit terrorist groups. These include forced marriages of females who were abducted by Boko Haram; utilization of child beggars by the Boko Haram for fundraising purposes, force marriage in Timbuktu; Mali by the Al Qaeda and Ansar Dine in the Islamic Maghreb; trafficking of human organs by the ISIS and other affiliated armed groups for financing purposes; trafficking of Yazidi women and girls but the ISIS for slavery and sexual exploitation, and kidnapping of Eritrean migrants in Libya by the ISIL for sexual exploitation. Financial gain and increased recruitment of terrorists in other countries such as the ones mentioned above may pose security threats to the United States (Huckerby, 2019).
Human trafficking fuels terrorism through revenue generation. Terrorist participation in illicit trade such as human trafficking serves many purposes including demoralization of communities, destruction of history, harming individual health and wellbeing, and the weakening of social solidarity. Human trafficking pays for the social service functions of terrorist groups. Over the years the role of drug trade as a tool for financing terrorist activities have been reducing since increased policing and criminal justice system focus on drug trade has threatened the illicit drug supply chains. Diversification of the illicit products has been an effective strategy used by terrorists to ensure their survival (Shelley, 2020). Kidnapping and human trafficking has been employed widely by terrorist groups as a strategic tactic for decimating communities as well as institutionalizing slavery and sexual violence. Communities can be demoralized if their members are kidnapped and trafficked for the benefit of terrorist groups (Shelley, 2020).
Securing the Nation Through Civil Education
The public should be sensitized about the issue of human trafficking and how they occur in all forms. Besides, public education should focus on social, economic, political, security and community impact of human trafficking. It is also important to educate the public about their basic human rights in relation to human trafficking. Foreign victims of human trafficking should also be educated about their rights and protections to enable them to come out and speak up or seek help (Toney-Butler et al., 2021).
According to the United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (2019), human trafficking amounts to serious violations of human rights and it is one of the most profitable activities of human crime. Besides, the public should be encouraged to freely report suspected cases of human trafficking and illicit trades such as forced labor, forced sex or under 18 commercial sex, and illicit drugs since they may fuel terrorist activities (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Children are most vulnerable to be trafficked and involved in commercial drug trade (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 2020). Refer to Figure 1.
There is also need to sensitive transport specialists, accountants, and lawyers to be able to detect and report illicit trade such as human trafficking so that actors can be brought to the book or convicted (Shelley, 2020). The public should also be educated and warned about different ways in which they can inadvertently or intentionally participate in human trafficking include money laundering, purchase of illicit suppliers or products, exploitation of women and young girls for sexual satisfaction, and use of forced labor (Shelley, 2020).
Proposed Changes to the Law to Stop Human Trafficking and Stabilize National Security
Human trafficking needs to be addressed and prevented through proper implementation and enforcement of existing laws. In the last 18 years, the United States Congress has enacted several comprehensive bills with the intent of bringing the crime to and halt as well as to increase awareness of the crime in the international and domestic communities (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). The U.S. abolished slavery about 150 years ago. However, human exploitation through forced labor and sex remains a serious human rights violation as well as a national security issue (Schoeberl &Nivens, 2018). The 13th Amendment of to the United States Constitution banned slavery and involuntary servitude in 1865. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act, which was enacted in 2000 combats trafficking in persons using the three ‘Ps’ approach. The three ‘Ps’ approach include prevention, prosecution, and protection (Toney-Butler et al., 2021).
Protection of trafficked persons regardless of immigration status, can reduce human trafficking. Benefits such as immigration assistance and healthcare are proved under Trafficking Victims Protection Act. Re-victimization should be avoided through enactment of protective measures (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). The Trafficking Victims Protection Act arms federal prosecutors with adequate tools to bring human traffickers to justice for crimes against humanity. The Law mandates financial restitution of individuals who have been exploited by human traffickers and provides stronger penalties for those persons who are convicted of crimes associated with human trafficking. Prosecutable crimes in trafficking of persons include labor trafficking and sex trafficking (Toney-Butler et al., 2021).
Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 also reinforces prevention of efforts on behalf of the United States government. Incentives to improve economic conditions in different parts of the world may deter trafficking in persons. The public should be educated about Trafficking Victims Protection Act and The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons which was created in under the Act so as to report suspected cases of human trafficking (Toney-Butler et al., 2021). Traffickers need to be arrested, charged, sentenced and receive heavy convictions for their criminal activities since they cause suffering to individuals and families (Gozdziak & Vogel, 2020). The United States should also collaborate with other countries to address issues such as forced evacuation and migration since they make individuals to be susceptible to exploitation and human trafficking (Yousaf, 2017).
Convictions for trafficking offences is rare; although human trafficking can pose serious security threats to communities and the country at large. Strategies such imposing of travel bans to traffickers should be taken into consideration. In addition, drastic measures such as freezing of assets own by human traffickers and pursing legal charges against human traffickers may help to discourage people from participating in the practice (Council on Foreign Relations, 2019). Restrictive migration polices may serve as effective counter-terrorism measure (Helbling & Meierrieks, 2020).
In conclusion, human trafficking has evolved into an effective strategy used by terrorist groups to gain power and control as well as a chief source of funding of terrorist activities. Human trafficking has negative health impacts on the victims since they can lead to physical injuries and psychological problems. Besides, it can have economical and security implications on communities and the nation at large. The government may be forced to provide health benefits and other protections to victims of human trafficking. On the other hand, human trafficking may destabilize the country and communities since it may fuel and strengthen criminal and terrorist activities. Public education and proper enforcement or implementation of current anti-human trafficking laws and legislations is recommended to adequate fight the vice in the U.S.
Bonilla, T., & Mo, C. H. (2018). The evolution of human trafficking messaging in the United States and its effect on public opinion. Journal of Public Policy, 39(2). https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/journal-of-public-policy/article/evolution-of-human-trafficking-messaging-in-the-united-states-and-its-effect-on-public-opinion/E4EFA5D49DDCCC943856B8F07A899162
Cary, M., Oram, S., Howard, L. M., Trevillionm K., & Byford, S. (2016). Human trafficking and severe mental illness: an economic analysis of survivors’ use of psychiatric services. BMC Health Services Research, 16, Article number: 284. https://bmchealthservres.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12913-016-1541-0
Chohaney, M. (2016). Minor and adult domestic sex trafficking risk factors in Ohio. Journal of the Society for Social Work and Research, 7(1). https://doi.org/10.1086/685108
Council on Foreign Relations. (Oct 2019). The security implications of human trafficking. https://www.cfr.org/report/security-implications-human-trafficking
Gozdziak, E. M., & Vogel, K. M. (2020). Palermo at 20: A retrospective and prospective. Journal of Human Trafficking, 6(2), 109-118. https://doi.org/10.1080/23322705.2020.1690117
Helbling, M., & Meierrieks, D. (2020). Terrorism and migration: an overview. British Journal of Political Science, 0, 1-20. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/british-journal-of-political-science/article/terrorism-and-migration-an-overview/2D92D099D870D7D8E606C39E683D3E89
Huckerby, J. (Feb 22, 2019). When trafficking and terrorism connect: Dangers and dilemmas. https://www.justsecurity.org/62658/human-trafficking-terrorism-connect-dangers-dilemmas/
Schoeberl, R., &Nivens, B. (July 25, 2018). Human trafficking – a national security issue. https://www.domesticpreparedness.com/resilience/human-trafficking-a-national-security-issue/
Seelke, C. R. (Oct 13, 2016). Trafficking in persons in Latin America and the Caribbean. Congressional Research Service. https://fas.org/sgp/crs/row/RL33200.pdf
Shelley, L. I. (2020). Illicit trade and terrorism. Terrorism Research Initiative, 14(4). https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/26927661.pdf
Toney-Butler, T. J., Gossman, W., &Mittel, O. (2021). Human trafficking. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430910/
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. (2020). Global report on trafficking in persons. https://www.unodc.org/documents/data-and-analysis/tip/2021/GLOTiP_2020_15jan_web.pdf
United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate. (2019). Identifying and exploring the nexus between human trafficking, terrorism, and terrorism financing. https://www.un.org/sc/ctc/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/HT-terrorism-nexus-CTED-report.pdf
Yousaf, F. N. (2017). Forced migration, human trafficking, and human security. Current Sociology, 66(2), 209-225. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0011392117736309