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August & September in the News
September 28, 2017

We’ve had a few big items recently in the news about trafficking. Here’s the latest scoop:


New Study Shows Trafficking Rampant in Thai Fishing Industry

The International Justice Mission (IJM) has recently received a grant from the Walmart Foundation, along with funding from the U.S. Department of State, to study trafficking in the global seafood supply chain. Together with the Issara Institute, IJM conducted a survey of 260 fishermen, and found 38% had clearly been trafficked and yet another 49% had possibly been trafficked. Only 13% reported fair labor conditions at sea. Moreover, they have identified common patterns of abuse: 14% report physical abuse, 31.5% have witnessed a crewmate physically abused, and 76% accrued debt prior to working at sea, as debt bondage is also rampant.

IJM is building efforts to work alongside the Royal Thai Police to promote strong casework development, improved law enforcement efforts against human trafficking, and criminal deterrence to help stem impunity for criminal actors and to ensure stronger victim protection.

To read the full report, visit here.

Sources: Undercurrent News, FIS, VOA News



Senate Debates the Stop Enabling Sex Trafficking Act (SESTA)

Senator Rob Portman (R- OH) has introduced legislation to hold liable internet companies that knowingly facilitate trafficking on their platforms. Those who intentionally turn a blind eye to sex trafficking on their platforms would be subject to felony charges. Critics argue that this impinges on important internet freedoms and that it would only make traffickers move to the dark web where it would be harder to reach them and help victims.

To learn more about it, read our recent article on the topic here.

Sources: NBC Webcenter11, WIRED

Ivanka Trump Delivers Anti-Trafficking Speech at the U.N.

Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, delivered a speech in front of the UN General Assembly, calling trafficking “the greatest human rights issue of our time” and announced the Trump administration’s commitment to combatting human trafficking. Trump also announced the U.S. Department of State’s award of $25 million to the Global Fund to End Modern Slavery. Britain announced it would match that fund to bring a total contribution of over $50 million.

Sources: CNN, CBS News 

Senate Unanimously Passes the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2017

The United States Senate last week unanimously passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2017. The bill, authored by Chuck Grassley (R-Ia.), strengthens existing federal resources for human trafficking survivors and makes it easier for lawmakers to bring perpetrators to justice.

Source: Des Moines Register



Rohingya Muslims Fleeing Persecution in Myanmar Leaves Children Vulnerable

As untold numbers of Rohingya flee persecution and ethnic cleansing in Myanmar, the United Nation’s children agency, UNICEF, warns that the refugee children are at special risk. Not only are they at risk of malnutrition, or contracting diseases like cholera and measles, they also face sexual violence. According to UNICEF, of all the refugee children currently in Bangladesh, 1,400 are solo children who have travelled alone from Myanmar. This leaves them especially vulnerable to sexual predators from both abusers and traffickers.

To learn more, see here.

Source: India Times 

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