The trafficking of humans will not end unless the government dedicates itself to eradicating the issue. They have implemented acts such as the Trafficking Victims Prevention Act (TVPA) in 2000 and the Trafficking Victims Reauthorization Act in 2003; however, these acts are toothless tigers unless governments are willing to enforce the law.
Now, this is not to say that governments are doing nothing because they are doing something. However, they are not going about stopping the exploitation the right way. Instead, of targeting those who are trafficking the victims, the governments are incarcerating the victims (though they are incarcerating the traffickers but to a much lesser degree). For instance, when Sara Kruzan 11-years-old she met 31-years-old George Howard who molested her and began preparing her to become a prostitute. Kruzan began prostituting at the age of 13. When Kruzan was 16-year-old, she was convicted of killing her pimip. Kruzan now serves a life sentence in prison. Former Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger reduced her sentence to 25 years to life with the possibility to parole.
It is cases like these that perpetuate the trafficking of humans. Instead of demeaning the traffickers, governments incarcerate the prostitutes (and forced laborers in general), even though they were held against their will. By doing this, people believe prostitutes (and forced laborers) are the problem because they are in our country causing these problems. Believing this does not help the cause and eliminate the problem. It only perpetuates it. It allows traffickers to believe what they are doing is okay.
Traffickers are not the ones to look at if you want to end modern day slavery; it is the government. Governments hold the authority to incarcerate and create stricter laws to curb this injustice. And while governments are trying to curb it, they are putting their efforts in the wrong basket. They should be focusing more on incarcerating and finding the traffickers and focusing less on the prostitutes and those held in bondage.
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