“I am afraid to go home. My father’s friends used to rape me weekly and said if I told anyone they would bring shame to my family.” This statement was made by a teenage girl I interviewed in India recently as part of my research into rehabilitation processes for survivors of sex trafficking. To escape this abusive home situation, she ran away, and in the process was trafficked from Bangladesh to India. She spent two years in a brothel before being rescued by Rescue Foundation. She was 14 years old.
What can be done about this global and complex problem? Here are three key ways that you can make a difference.
Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP
Tulalip Tribes of Washington state and trafficking survivor and advocate Tysheena Rhames react as President Obama announces that he is signing the Violence Against Women Act, March 7 at the Interior Department in Washington. Op-ed contributor Rodney Green says suggests three ways people can help combat sex trafficking around the world – and in their own backyards.
Learn about the factors that foster vulnerability to trafficking such as poverty, unsafe migration, subcultures of gender discrimination, lack of education, demand, and lack of law enforcement. Investigate reputable organizations like International Justice Mission or GEMS, examine their approaches to combat trafficking, and consider volunteering or supporting their interventions.