“Unraveling”: Anti-Trafficking NGOs and the Garment Industry by Anne Elizabeth Moore and Melissa Mendes, Truthout (August 19, 2014)
Graphic Journalism- Comic book style illustration of investigation into connections between the garment trade and the sex trade. (includes links to additional work by Anne Elizabeth Moore)
Ladydrawers: The Somaly Problem
By Anne Elizabeth Moore and Leela Corman, Truthout (July 2014)
Graphic Journalism-Comic book style illustration. The Ladydrawers’ yearlong investigation into gender, labor and cultural production – “Our Fashion Year” – has unraveled the threads that bind the international garment trade to international anti-sex trafficking NGOs. Mainstream media recently witnessed the unraveling for itself with something we call the Somaly Problem – when a world-leading activist on sex trafficking gets caught in a series of lies.
Can Thailand free its modern-day slaves? by Noi Apisuk, Liz Hilton EMPOWER (January 2015)
“The media portrays human trafficking in a one-dimensional way. We see police carrying out raids and apprehending captive women. The women are seen being stood over and herded like inanimate objects, not treated with dignity and respect as people. Rather than solving the problem of “trafficking”, we see the continuation of human rights abuses…Understanding of “human trafficking” among officials remains unclear, so police, for example, search for evidence in the handbags of the women they capture. They find “evidence” such as condoms that were given out by the Ministry of Health in cooperation with the Global Fund for HIV/Aids programme….The first step must be to admit we cannot efficiently combat trafficking without reducing corruption. We must reflect on whether our traditional approaches to forced labour and prostitution are largely based on moral judgements and religious beliefs. Are such traditional judgements and beliefs really capable of answering the problems of modern society?”
Of Human Bondage- A coalition against human trafficking by Tara McKelvey (2004)
“…For years, the health-care educators and social workers had worked closely with the children, who are living “by hook or by crook, doing tricks,” says Arnold. They tried to teach the girls how to care for themselves….But that was before University of Rhode Island professor Donna Hughes started accusing nongovernmental organizations of teaching children “how to be prostitutes.” On April 3, 2003, she testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, saying, “It is unacceptable to provide medical services and condoms to enslaved people and ignore the slavery.””…NGO workers told us pedophiles now know they can go and have unprotected sex with children because the health-education programs have stopped.”
Obama Administration Policies on Trafficking by Melissa Ditmore (June 2009)
Dr. Melissa Ditmore, in The Guardian states that “The new TIP report suggests that the Obama administration is taking a more effective approach. Instead of adopting the Bush administration’s myopic focus on sex trafficking, the Obama administration has expanded the definition of trafficking to include a wider variety of examples of labour abuses than ever before.”
December 2008- The Passage and History of of HR7311: William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act
Human rights activist object to the house version of the TVPRA (HR3887), in concert with the US Department of Justice. The final TVPRA, passed in December 2008, addressed some concerns of human rights activists, however some issues remain. The earlier House version of HR 3887 had placed all commercial sex under the jurisdiction of the Federal government.
Urgent Item: Department of Justice, ICE, Targets Trafficking Victims for Exposing Their Plight also see New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice
“…When defense subcontractor Signal trafficked them to labor camps in the Gulf Coast and held them in forced labor, these workers fought back. They escaped indentured servitude, triggering a major DOJ investigation into criminal trafficking. They walked from New Orleans to Washington, DC in the footsteps of Mahatma Gandhi, to show Congress the brutal realities of the US guestworker program. And they launched a 29 day-long hunger strike, to pressure the DOJ to prosecute Signal on charges of criminal trafficking. As a result of speaking out publically, a group of these men were targeted in an ICE raid. On October 28, 2008 – days before the presidential election – ICE arrested over 20 of these workers in a terrifying immigration raid in Fargo, North Dakota.