One of the significant accomplishments in the history of civil war and revolutions is the ability and also the fact that slavery was abolished decades ago. However, slavery is still present in communities and globally in the contemporary society only that it has changed its face and also its manifestation (Aronowitz, 2009). Human trafficking is the modern-day form of slavery and continues to be a real issue in society. Every year there are thousands of individuals both men and women that fall into the hands of the brutal and grievous crime against humanity of human trafficking. They are victims of the offense in their countries and also abroad as the market continues expanding. With the existence of organized crime around the globe, there is an increase in the human trafficking over the course of time as there is ease of accessibility for the markets and also demand the crimes.
There is also not a single country in the world that is immune or even free of the human trafficking. Every country is either the origin, the destination or the transit point for the victims of the heinous crime against humanity. The United Nations identifies the existence and the prevailing rate of the human trafficking offenses in the world. It has led to the definition of human trafficking as any form of recruitment, transportation, harboring and also the receipt of persons by the use of threat or any other oppressive means such as coercion, deception or fraud for the purpose of exploitation. The exploitation of persons is also defined to include any form of sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery, servitude, removal of organs and even exploitation for prostitution (Zimmerman et. al., 2006). It is, therefore, clear that human trafficker’s underlying goal is to profit from another person’s exploitation of any form. Therefore, human trafficking is a very assorted practice that needs the attention of every member in society, the governments and other stakeholders locally and globally to accord it the necessary attention for effectively combating.
Current situation: the problem
Human trafficking in Europe and also on the global scene is a practice that is rapidly growing. It is also not a unique phenomenon to the current society but has existed for centuries where it took the form of slavery. However, slavery was different from human trafficking in that it was legally accepted whereas human trafficking is illegal all over Europe since it contravenes with the fundamental human rights of individuals (Kligman & Limoncelli, 2005). The European Union just like the other international conventions condemns the existence of trading of people in any region of the globe and is also subject to a directive in the European Union. It also recognizes the need for the entire member states to combat the trade within their borders and also engaging in the international frameworks to combat the crime.
The human trafficking also continues to be a major issue of concern since the fall of Communism. The economic hardships in some of these regions have been the major reason that has led to the increased thriving of the trade. it is because most of the traffickers lure the victims with the promise of a better life, prosperity and also success in other parts of Europe and also the world. Although all the forms of human trafficking are in existent around Europe, sex trafficking is the most rampant. The exploitation of girls and women continues to get a lot of attention around Europe. Between the years 2003 to 2004 over 85% of the victims that were rescue from human traffickers had been subjected to sexual exploitation (Aronowitz, 2009). The continued existence of organized crime, poverty, inefficient counter measures to the trade, corruption in the governments leading to collision with the criminals and also risen criminal entrepreneurship are the major reasons that have resulted in the growth of human trafficking in Europe.
Impact of human trafficking
The effects of human trafficking are psychological, social, and economic and also health-related and may significantly cripple the continued growth of Europe as a region. The psychological impact of human trafficking may be as a result of the treatment and also the exploitation that the victims go through. Some of the victims are recruited while still young and are then subjected to gross mistreatment. As a result, it leads to their inadequate mental health and may suffer from self-esteem issues, disorientation, depression, post traumatic stress disorder and also some emotional disturbances (Zimmerman et. al., 2006).
The physical and psychological tortures may also affect the general health of the individual. According to a book by Alexis Aronowitz, titled; 'Human Trafficking, Human Misery' (2009), over 80% of trafficking victims are subjected to sexual exploitation and even prostitution. As a result of the forced multiple partners, such victims may face other health complications and diseases such as HIV/Aids that may in turn pass on to the partners that they are forced to sleep with. As a result, it causes a real health problem affecting the public health dynamics in the region.
The existence of the trafficking trade may result to some social issues since it goes against the moral fiber of some individuals. Existence of the individuals for sexual exploitation and other forms of exploitation may lead to increased prostitution in society thus destabilizing the social sphere of society and also the morals (Aronowitz, 2009).
Moreover, the trade has serious economic repercussions in the region (Aronowitz, 2009). It is because of the increased generation of money through the trade that lead to the increased cases of money laundering that may in turn affect the economy in a major way causing inflation in some cases. Moreover, the existence of cheap and free labor in some cases may lead to the decreased employment opportunities that subsequently reduce the per capita income of such a country.
The public, government as well non-governmental interventions are necessary. It is because, the crime is extensive and also involves a lot of players hence the need to include all the stakeholders in combating the trafficking. The government should play its role in making policies and laws that actively abolish the trade and also try to c0onmtrol and close down the loopholes that may be existent to allow for the continued thriving of the trade. The government should also institute very strict regulations against all the traffickers caught engaging in the crime. It is also imperative that all government within Europe create special policing units to fight the crime and such units should have regional mandate and therefore, the European Union should be at the forefront at creating such a body to ensure that the transnational trafficking is combated. The public on the other hand should remain vigilant and also on the lookout for any suspicious acts since the trafficking victims are taken to the same neighborhood and homes that we thrive in. therefore, there should be collective and community policing for the crime. The Non-governmental organizations should also actively be engaged at offering support systems to the victims and also educating the public on some of the ways tp protect themselves from falling victims to the trafficking. They should lobby for the rights of the victims and also engage in research and creation of awareness on the crime.
In conclusion, human trafficking in Europe as is the case globally is an issue that requires being addressed since it is to a great extent on the rise. The European Union, as well as the other international conventions and bodies such as the United Nations, recognizes the need to combat the crime in society. However, poverty, corruption among the law enforcers, risen organized crimes and ineffective trafficking countermeasures continue to encourage the thriving of the trade in the region and also globally. It is imperative that the governments of the member states, the general public and also the non-governmental organization t join forces and play their role in combating the crime. It is the only way to fight the deeply-rooted crime against humanity. Therefore, human trafficking is a very assorted practice that needs the attention of every member in society, the governments and other stakeholders locally and globally to accord it the necessary attention so as it can be effectively combated.