We are living in a world that has embraced the absolute power of man over another. In the 21st century, the unjustified trade and enslavement of human beings constitute a degenerate state of affairs, which only confirms that human trafficking is the biggest ethical problem facing the globe today. Human trafficking includes the use of human deception by forcefully stripping off one’s dignity and self-worth to manipulate the vulnerable. As trafficked victims are forced to sell their innate rights and are subject to coercive subjugation, human trafficking portrays a contrasting image of injustice between equals, with regard to the right of every person over their life. Sex trafficking is a modern type of slavery, and the majority of its victims are women and children. Sex trafficking victims are subjected to coercion and fraud, all in order to make them perform commercial sex.
Sex trafficking is a broader term that may include prostitution, but also pornography, exotic dancing, stripping, live sex shows, mail-order brides, military prostitution, and sex tourism. It is a transnational industry that produces billions of dollars by trafficking women. Although men, women, and children are all victims of sex trafficking, it is a crime that affects women and girls predominantly. This affects approximately 80% of those trafficked transnationally, most of whom are trafficked for commercial sex. Degradation of human and women’s rights, poor public health, disrupted societies, and reduced social development are among the many costs that society has to pay. There are detrimental physical and psychological health problems and social disadvantages for victims of sex trafficking.
It becomes very difficult for them to flee once women and girls become involved in the sex trafficking industry. Victims can face legal barriers, where traffickers confiscate or sequester all types of documentation relating to immigration and citizenship. Other obstacles that women and girls may face to prevent them from escaping the sex trafficking ring are language barriers, fear, limited awareness, and lack of resources.
Legacy prostitution, or the forced enslavement of future generations of girls in the sex trafficking business, is an expected social practice in many parts of the world. Sex trafficking is also a vital health problem with wider social consequences, that needs both medical and legal attention. Healthcare professionals should work in a clinical environment to enhance the monitoring, detection, and assistance of victims of sex trafficking, and to help them access legal and social services.
It’s high time we need to look into this emerging issue. By being cautious in our locality and reporting suspicious activities to authorities on hotline numbers, each person may contribute to this cause. Only when we began investigating did we realize the absolute seriousness of this issue. Knowledge among students needs to be generated through seminars and workshops. In order to improve society, there are several organizations working towards this cause in our country. ‘Apne Aap’ is one of them.
Apne Aap is a non-governmental organization (NGO) that aims to support victims of human trafficking. Marginalized women and girls are provided with a forum for each issue, allowing them to share their stories and raise their voices against the cycles of abuse and prejudice they face every day. They are learning that their stories are the most important force in the fight to end sex trafficking, with the help of Apne Aap.
Apne Aap Women Worldwide is an Indian activist group that empowers oppressed girls and women to resist and end sex trafficking. They organize disadvantaged girls and women into small groups for self-empowerment, working together to gain access to legal, social, economic, and political rights. In brothels, red-light districts, slums, and villages, they have set up 150 Self-Empowerment Groups (SEGs) since 2002.
In order to end sex trafficking, these individuals are at the forefront of our community-centred approach. They have also turned the most oppressed women in the process into champions who are willing to alter their own destiny and those of their peers. Apne Aap stands for a ‘Third Way’ to deal with prostitution and sex trafficking. They conclude that the law does not punish women for being in prostitution or having to perform related ancillary practices, such as soliciting. Thus, they are trying to decriminalise girls and women stuck in prostitution. It also calls for anyone who pays for sex to be prosecuted.
In our daily lives, we should now feel responsible to take appropriate action in order to prevent human trafficking. There is no doubt that we live in a world which, every day, specializes in creating broken people. We have reached a point where the eradication of human trafficking is no longer limited to a few people or organizations willing to do so. Anyone will assist in mitigating this condemnable situation in any way. It only comes down to whether we are willing to take the first steps.