Human trafficking is a major concern for governments and states alike. It is an issue that permeates virtually every developed country as well as underdeveloped ones and is based on the forcible migration of people in order to exploit them. This sample research paper by an Ultius professional writer explores Jac-Kucharski’s views on human trafficking and the ways in which individuals are brought into that type of criminal behavior.
Understanding human trafficking
Not all international migration is compulsory and in the pursuit of a better life. Some forms of migration are forced as is in the case of human trafficking. The practice of human trafficking is the exploitation of individuals through force, fraud or coercion. Human trafficking does not need to involve movement of any kind. However, most acts of human trafficking are conducted through movement from country to country or transnationally.
Human Trafficking is an issue which has existed for centuries however it has just recently entered the dialogue of legislators, law enforcement, and social workers. Globally there are an estimated 12 million people who are victims of human trafficking (Jac-Kucharski, p. 150). The majority who are affected are women and children as they are a vulnerable population who can be exploited.
Jac-Kucharski’s article on human trafficking analyzed the push and pull factors which bring individuals into the world of human trafficking. She also analyzed the cost-benefit analysis that is completed by human traffickers to determine the amount of individuals they will need to make a profit. Jac-Kucharski discussed how the push factor of growing up in poverty and economic opportunities creates a pool of potential human trafficking victims. The pull factor influencing individuals to migrate consist of economic opportunities and the pursuit of political freedom (p. 153).
Kucharski also discussed the reasons for traffickers to engage in the practice of trafficking of individuals.
“I believe that it is the costs associated with the trip (just like costs of migration for voluntary migrants), the likelihood of getting caught, and ultimately the demand for his or her services (i.e. providing sexual servants or slaves) in the destination country (pull factors) that complete the calculation for the trafﬁcker” (Kucharksi, p. 154).
These causes result in a ripe environment for human trafficking to occur and continue for many years.
Lack of human trafficking research leads to creative analysis
Due to the scarcity of research available on the topic of human trafficking, Kucharski developed a case study based on trafficking in the United States. Kucharski utilized the T-Visa (a Visa granted to human trafficking victims under the United States’ immigration policies) to determine which countries produced the most human trafficking victims. Kucharski then analyzed the economic status of the countries where the individuals came from to determine the push and pull factors. Kucharski determined that the economic status of the country of origination did not impact the rates of human trafficking.
This led him to the conclusion that the current methods of addressing human trafficking are not working.
“This suggests that as efforts to battle human trafﬁcking in source countries continue, some approaches should be re-evaluated. In particular, the way in which foreign aid, which is meant to alleviate the human trafﬁcking problem (through education etc.), is spent needs to be reassessed” (Kucharski, p. 162).
New methods, programs, and services need to be developed in order to create a set of solutions to combat the problem of human trafficking in various countries.
Non-Government Organizations’s (NGOs) policies
Current programs that are out there to combat the issue of human trafficking are largely run by NGO’s. These programs usually are based in the country where there is a major problem of human trafficking. There are a variety of programs that could fall under the umbrella of working towards defeating human trafficking. Some programs work towards reintegrating victims back into society. These programs are geared towards teaching empowerment and vocational skills which will translate into jobs for them.
While programs can be developed to assist victims of human trafficking this will not be sufficient enough. It is necessary to develop solutions for human trafficking. This will be difficult to do as there are so many causes of violent crimes such as human trafficking. Human trafficking is a complex issue with many causes which at time intertwine. Human trafficking can be attributed to structural issues such as poverty, lack of education and a lack of opportunity.
However, while one’s socioeconomic status is a contributing factor to crimes such as this one, it cannot be solely looked at as a cause of crime. It could be caused by criminal enterprises such as organized crime, corruption in public office, and how much of a lucrative business human trafficking can be which Kucharski found when she did the cost-benefit analysis to determine that traffickers needed to engage in a high volume of victims (p. 152).
Human trafficking underpublished
Kucharski also found the literature available on human trafficking to be lacking. The reasons for this lack of research could be as complex as the causes or human trafficking. However, it is an issue that needs to be addressed. Before we can begin assisting these victims of trafficking heal there should be a knowledge base of what works for these victims. In most of the articles, there may have been a sentence or two about what kinds of services victims were receiving. However, there was little analysis of how effective these services were.
While other models could be applied to victims of trafficking in order to be effective a program model should be created which takes into consideration the specific needs and circumstances of human trafficking victims. This can be a difficult project to undertake as there are not only issues of funding, apathy, or availability of methodology. However, there are also varied forms of human trafficking all which cannot be treated in the same manner.
Each human trafficking case different
Someone who has been forced to perform manual labor may not need the same type of services as a person who has been sexually trafficked. Sex trafficking is more akin to statutory rape or more violent forms of sexual assaults. A mail order bride may not need the same type of assistance as someone who has been forced to work on a magazine crew. Therefore there need to be distinct programs which not only assist victims of human trafficking but also address their own specific form of trafficking.
This is a need which should be addressed as we begin to study and realize the large scale of human trafficking. Combining a multidisciplinary approach to research, coming up with solutions to human trafficking and coming up with programs to assist the victims would be an effective way to begin to tackle this problem. By working together and approaching human trafficking with as much enthusiasm as the traffickers do an impact may be made.
Methodology of T-Visas
Using the T-visas as the variable to determine which countries of origin human trafficking victims come from was not an effective method as many human trafficking victims are not reported to the authorities. In order to obtain a T-Visa, a person must be verified as a human trafficking victim which requires multiple hoops to jump through.
Kucharski could use the literature that is available to determine which countries have high rates of human trafficking as the study needed to be expanded to a global analysis rather than just a study of the United States. Although the problem of human trafficking is prevalent in the United States, it is a global immigration problem as most of the victims come from a foreign underdeveloped country.
The issue of human trafficking is an important one to study in migration studies as not all forms of migration are beneficial or chosen to be undertaken by immigrants. By incorporating the relatively new concept of human trafficking in the study of migration the research can be expanded upon. Further research can also assist in developing programs to combat the problem. This could result in spreading awareness and assist in preventing future victims.
Jac-Kucharski, Alicja. “The Determinants of Human Trafﬁcking: A US Case Study.” International Migration. (2012) 50.6, 150-165.