Posted: February 17th, 2022

Sex Trafficking, Its Prevalence, and Impacts on Human Rights Law






Sex Trafficking, Its Prevalence, and Impacts on Human Rights Law



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Topic; Sex Trafficking

Research Question; what is sex trafficking, its statics, and its impacts on human rights law?

Literature Review

In contemporary society, human trafficking has taken the form of modern-day slavery. Human trafficking involves using force to involve people in activities that they do not wish to be part of (Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). The inhuman act steals people’s freedom to make a profit in other people’s favor. The most common type of human trafficking in society today is sex trafficking. Sex trafficking is a crime under the category of human trafficking where women, men, or children are forcefully abducted or lured into commercial sex activities (Gerassi et al., 2017). However, women and children are more likely to be victims of sex trafficking than men (Ramaj, 2021). Sex trafficking is a crime under human trafficking where women, men, or children are forcefully abducted or lured into commercial sex activities. Across everywhere globally, sex trafficking has become one of the significant challenges. Additionally, international sex trafficking victims have drowned their cries since the global has failed to define a long-lasting solution to the human trafficking challenge (Matsuura, 2020). Across everywhere globally, sex trafficking has become one of the significant challenges. Often sex traffickers lure or trap their victims through false promises. Both adults and minors fall victim to sex trafficking. Those who live in obsequious poverty and the indigenous population are usually politically and economically marginalized (Matsuura, 2020). Most people from such groups in the society lack access to proper education and other essential public systems; thus, they often fall victims to sex trafficking while maneuvering to survive. 

The statics of human trafficking in 2018 conducted indicated that sex trafficking is the most trending form of human trafficking across the globe. More than four million women, men, and children in 2016 fell victims of sex trafficking for sexual exploitation activities around the world (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 72). Again in 2016, sex trafficking research indicated that more than sixty-eight percent of the victims are within their own country’s borders (Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). The situation created the meaning that most sex-trafficking activities are domestic, thus contracting the typical perspectives that most victims are usually foreigners kidnapped or lured away from their own countries. However, both domestic and international sex trafficking continues to be a problem that gets more complex every tie across the globe. Estimation of the sex trafficking industry in the United Kingdom highlights that it could be a three billion-dollar industry annually (Cockbain et al., 2018). Consequently, children come second as the most vulnerable to sex trafficking after women. United Nations notes that the detected victims of sex trafficking vary significantly by region. For instance, Sub-Saharan African countries record cases of more children sex-trafficking victims approximated at sixty-four percent (World Health Organization, 2019). Central America and European Countries also record cases of sex trafficking among children but at twenty-five percent. Sex-trafficking statistics do not have a consistent pattern but rather keep on fluctuating from time to time. 

Subsequently, different scholars have studied the impact of sex trafficking on human rights law covering its violation of people’s rights and freedom. In addition to being a form of violence against children and women, sex trafficking is also a severe violation of human rights law (Ferrari, 2021). Human rights law refers to a set of equal regulations whose violations remain punishable by law, and it primarily safeguards human dignity from illegitimate oppression (Goodale & Merry, 2007). Subsequently, the human rights law explains that every human being exists freely and equally in rights and dignity (Goodale & Merry, 2007). Generally, the human rights law implies that no human being should be exposed to torture or inhuman oppression (Goodale, 2007). On the contrary to the human rights law, sex trafficking involves abduction forcefully or luring people into commercial sex activities. Often sex traffickers lure their victims with promising opportunities such as employment (UN WOMEN, 2019). Individuals who own forced prostitution or sex-trafficking activities are usually called pimps or traffickers. Pimps or traffickers are the manipulators who control every activity within the sex-trafficking business to live off the profit of their victims (Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). Usually, pimps do not have a friendly relationship with their victims. The pimps treat their victims inhumanly in a harsh environment(Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). The victims of sex trafficking often experience treatments with characters similar to those in domestic violence. The victims hardly get freedom and are always isolated under strictly guarded and controlled environments (Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). They experience various challenges such as sexual abuse emotional, psychological, and physical stress (Franchino-Olsen et al., 2020). Pimps may also take full control of their victims by administering hard drugs. Thus, sex trafficking denies its victims the right to security, liberty, and free life while exposing them to extreme inhuman oppressions. 

Additionally, sex trafficking exposes its victim to long-lasting health complications, thus abusing the human rights law, which protects people’s right to live a free and healthy life. While European countries and the United States are profound destinations for a large number of sex trafficking victims, the health impacts of sex trafficking affect different cultures across the globe, including families whose members fall victims (Cockbain et al., 2018). Subsequently, the “World Health Organization (WHO)” Justice Department explains that approximately eighty-two percent of trafficked victims end up as victims of sex trafficking (World Health Organization, 2019). Again, WHO also noted that trafficking primarily for sex exploitation had increased rapidly worldwide. Another study explained that sex victims often become vulnerable to developing health complications in various scopes, including emotionally and physically. Some also suffer long-lasting sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS (World Health Organization, 2019). In such instances, sex trafficking violates human rights law by exposing humans brings to illegitimate oppressions that expose their health and general well-being to severe illnesses. 

A gap in the Sex-Trafficking

Researchers have failed to focus on investigating the prevalence of sex trafficking rates amongst adolescents and children across the globe. Sex trafficking affects both the young and the old (UN WOMEN, 2019). However, numerous research studies focus more on sex trafficking prevalence rates amongst older women, thus failing to understand the human rights issue among young people precisely. Hence, studies should develop efforts to research sex trafficking magnitude amongst minors across the globe.









Cockbain, E., Bowers, K., & Dimitrova, G. (2018). Human trafficking for labor exploitation: the results of a two-phase systematic review mapping the European evidence base and synthesizing key scientific research evidence. Journal Of Experimental Criminology14(3), 319-360. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11292-017-9321-3

Ferrari, C. (2021). The Factors Inv ors Involved in the Exit fr ed in the Exit from Sex T om Sex Trafficking: A Re trafficking: A Review. Journal Of International Women’s Studies22(5), 195-209. Retrieved 26 January 2022, from https://vc.bridgew.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2448&context=jiws.

Franchino-Olsen, H., Chesworth, B., Boyle, C., Rizo, C., Martin, S., & Jordan, B. et al. (2020). The Prevalence of Sex Trafficking of Children and Adolescents in the United States: A Scoping Review. Trauma, Violence, & Abuse23(1), 182-195. https://doi.org/10.1177/1524838020933873

Gerassi, L., Edmond, T., & Nichols, A. (2017). Design strategies from sexual exploitation and sex work studies among women and girls: Methodological considerations in a hidden and vulnerable population. Action Research15(2), 161-176. https://doi.org/10.1177/1476750316630387

Goodale, M. (2007). The Power of Right(s): Tracking Empires of Law and New Modes of Social Resistance in Bolivia (and Elsewhere). Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 26 January 2022.

Goodale, M., & Merry, S. (2007). The Practice of Human Rights; Tracking Law Between the Global and the Local. Cambridge University Press. Retrieved 26 January 2022.

Matsuura, H. (2020). Empirical Studies of Sex Trafficking. Encyclopedia Of The UN Sustainable Development Goals, 1-11. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-71058-7_66-1

Ramaj, K. (2021). The Aftermath of Human Trafficking: Exploring the Albanian Victims’ Return, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration Challenges. Journal Of Human Trafficking, 1-22. https://doi.org/10.1080/23322705.2021.1920823

UN WOMEN. (2019). Trafficked: Three survivors of human trafficking share their stories. UN Women. Retrieved 26 January 2022, from https://www.unwomen.org/en/news/stories/2019/7/compilation-trafficking-survivors-share-stories.

World Health Organization. (2019). Understanding and addressing violence against women; Human trafficking. Retrieved 26 January 2022, from https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/77394/WHO_RHR_12.42_eng.pdf;jsessionid=8C4D4E21D480FADCD09F93926E3F437C?sequence=1.





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