Call for Government Action on Human Trafficking
The Office for Systemic Justice of the Federation of Sisters of St. Joseph of Canada has written to the premier of British Columbia on the need for strong government action to deter human trafficking at the 2010 Olympics. There is much evidence that human trafficking increases during international sporting events. Therefore, the Office for Systemic Justice calls on the B.C. government to create awareness concerning human trafficking, including its root causes such as poverty, gender inequality, unemployment and demand for exploitative sex.
The June 2008 issue of Stop Trafficking: Anti-Human Trafficking Newsletter issued by the Sisters of the Divine Saviour contains an article from the Aboriginal Women’s Action Networkspeaking out on the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, especially concerning media discussions on prostitution.
A significant number of street prostitutes are young Aboriginal women and girls. Because of the long, multi-generational history of colonization, marginalization and displacement, aboriginal women are either forced or trafficked into prostitution and targeted by other individuals who go uncharged. The Aboriginal Women’s Action Network opposes the legalization of prostitution and any state regulation of prostitution that entrenches Aboriginal women and children in the so-called sex-trade. Legalizing prostitution will not make it safer for those prostituted, but will merely increase the numbers of individuals benefiting from this unjust practice.
By Jean Leahy CSJ