In this post, I will focus on how to prevent human trafficking among immigrants in the United States. In a simple definition from my book, Imprisoned: The Travails of a Trafficked Victim, “Human trafficking is when a person is here in the United States as a result of fraud, force or coercion for the purpose of being subjected to involuntary servitude, forced labor, debt bondage, slavery, or commercial sex exploitation.”
I am writing this post in response to a reader’s question from one of my previous posts. Human trafficking as a result of fraud can take various forms. Some of the forms are promise of marriage, education, employment, or a better life. There are immigrants in colleges across the United States that are vulnerable or are already victims of human trafficking as a result of fraud. For example, some people have applied for student visa and are supposed to be in college but are not because they were not allowed to get enrolled by their traffickers, whom are known to them as friends, neighbors from home country, or family members. There are others who have been brought under the pretense of going to middle or high school but are kept as maid in the homes of their traffickers.
There are other category of victims who are married to their traffickers. Many in this category are working while their traffickers, whom they know as their spouses are garnishing their income or denying them access to the income that they have earned from work. Some are trafficked by people they know as their employers, where they are also working, but are not being paid, or are told that their income is being used to pay off the debt they owed for coming to the United States. Some are made to have sex with multiple partners while the money received went to the trafficker.
It takes continuous education and community awareness to prevent anyone from becoming a victim of human trafficking. One of the tactics of traffickers, whether it is the case of one victim or more, is isolation. Victims are isolated from known people like friends and families. Worse still, if a family member is the trafficker, the victim is made to believe that other family members or friends who may be helpful is a bad influence. It is very difficult to know that someone is a trafficker when the person is familiar. However, for a victim in the United States, there are various resources available to support a victim. The national human trafficking resource center has a hotline. The number is 1-888-373-7888. This is a number that I will recommend to an immigrant victim who doesn’t know who to contact or how to get help. My second recommendation is the nonprofit organization that I founded called The Enitan Story. If a victim has access to the computer, the email for The Enitan Story is email@example.com or call the number 763-433-9454.
I hope I have been able to answer this question in simplicity.
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Bye for now, until next time.