June 21, 2005
Young women from all over the world are lured to away from home with promises of freedom and enough money to support themselves and send home to their families. But hundreds of thousands of them get just the opposite. Instead of freedom and money they endure slavery and sexual abuse. The story of just one of these women is found in the Minnesota Women’s Press, June 15th issue, in an article entitled "Human trafficking isn't somebody else's problem anymore".
Like so many others, Salima was promised a job and a good life in America. She spoke no English and knew no one in this country, except for her captors. One of them got her pregnant after abusing her. Now she moves form shelter to shelter in fear of being found by her captors and losing her child.
This kind of slavery occurs all over the world. I was surprised to find, however, that the Twin Cities is deemed a “high intensity human trafficking region” by the U.S. Department of Justice.
I was also surprised to read that as of August 1, “…it will be a felony…to knowingly destroy, conceal, remove, confiscate, or possess any passport or immigration documents of another person to prevent his or her liberty…” Why so late? It seems to me that this kind of law has applied to the mail in one’s mailbox for a very long time, and slavery isn’t such a new concept, either. Until our immigration laws catch up with the flow of immigrants, I’m afraid there will be many more Salimas.
I too was upset at reading this article. I almost used the same one for my forum but found it too disturbing. Like Patti, why did this take so long? We could probably make some educated guesses but I don't want to go there today. This story reminds me that the U.S. is not so progressive and civilized as others might think. How different are we from developing countries in these regards? I personally think the U.S. has lots to learn from other countries and cultures, such as child care and care of the elderly to be specific!
Posted by: Debbie at June 24, 2005 12:06 PM