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Reflections of a working writer and reader



Women – An Owner’s Manual

One of the current Amnesty campaigns is concerned with protecting trafficked women.

These women are imported from carefully chosen supplier countries including Moldova, Romania, Albania, Thailand, Nigeria and Sierra Lione. Moldovans are now particularly available, with an estimated 25% of the Moldovan population having been exported since the country became independent.

Specific import techniques may vary from woman to woman, e.g.

Coercion and Deceit. Women are offered attractive employment as nannies, waitresses, secretaries, etc. in the UK and other western countries. A reasonable salary is suggested, together with the necessary visas/legal papers, etc. In fact, the job does not exist. Neither do the papers.

Friend/family collaboration. Women may be offered for sale by their own family members (fathers, mothers, aunts, brothers and boyfriends have all been known to supply female relatives/partners as sex products).

Violent abduction. Slightly less common, kidnapping of women is used to supplement the supply of trafficked women.

woman What is urgently needed are new international laws and guidelines that recognize trafficked women as victims of crime, and offer them basic protection. The Council of Europe Convention on Action Against Trafficking in Human Beings has finally been drawn up. However, before it can come into force it must be ratified by 10 states. So far the UK has failed to sign. You could talk to your MP about this. Or write to Vernon Coaker at the Home Office. You could join Amnesty International or support the organization with some cash. If you live outside of the UK check if your own government is doing enough (or anything?) to prevent human trafficking. At least blog it. Because what has been described here is only the beginning of a life of violence, pain, disease, degradation and misery for many young girls.


4 Responses to “Women – An Owner’s Manual”

  1. John, there’s a really good post about this subject on Debi Alper’s Blog ( I think she’s actually based a book on the subject.

    jb says: Thanks Bill, I’ve just been over there for a look. The link is here. Debi’s blog on the subject, like mine, is based on the latest Amnesty leaflet.

    But listen; I didn’t know about Debi’s post until you pointed it out, which just goes to show that a whole lot of people need to blog about the subject before we make an impact. Put something on your blog, please (link to me or Debi or both), and ask people to pass it on.

  2. Napfisk says:

    Belgium seems to have signed but not yet ratified it. I couldn’t seem to find much about whether our government will do so anytime soon. We’re headed for national elections in early 2007, so I fear it won’t get much coverage. Let’s hope the local NGOs can keep pushing it up the agenda though.

    jb says: Yes, NGOs and human rights groups are quite active on this at the moment. But it does need publicizing as much as possible.

  3. debi says:

    Yes! Yes! Yes! You can’t have too many people posting about this kind of subject.

    jb says: So, Debi, we’re looking for volunteers, right?

  4. ruth says:

    Thanks John for writing about this. I just went to Debi’s website and added a comment and emailed the UK government. Need to check if Ireland has signed. Probably not.

    jb says: Great, Ruth. You’re an activist. But we still need a few more.