Posted by: tinyoliphant | January 14, 2010

How you can become an abolitionist

There are many different ways to take part in the fight against human trafficking. Here are some everyday ways of doing your part:

  1. If you are a male, don’t go to strip clubs and don’t use the services of prostitutes, either domestically or internationally. It’s basic economics: no demand = no supply needed. I know that there are some women who voluntarily go into these fields, but the vast majority are being held and forced to work against their will. Children as young as four years old are forced to service dozens of men each day. Young women, many of whom underage, are being traded back and forth between strip clubs Alaska and Oregon. Get a girlfriend, download some porn online…do what you have to do, just don’t put money into the pockets of traffickers.
  2. For coffee and chocolate, always buy fair or direct trade. 1-5% of all coffee and chocolate products are grown using slave labor. Although that doesn’t seem like a large percentage, take into consideration the amount of coffee and chocolate consumed by each person everyday, and you will be able to see how even 1% every year equates to millions of dollars of coerced, un-paid labor.
  3. The the same vein, considering buying your birthday or Christmas presents, or even a special treat for yourself, from an organization that supports former trafficking victims. Some great online stores are Made by Survivors, Not for Sale, and Stop Traffick Fashion.
  4. Watch the news. Read some blogs. Inform yourself about the world. Tell your friends. The more that people know about what’s going on in the world, the better.

If you are more serious about helping on the cause, or have more time or money to donate, here are some other ways to help out:

  1. If you’re in high school or college, join your school’s anti-trafficking club. There are more and more springing up everyday. If you’re school doesn’t one, start one! It’s not that hard, and there are many organizations that would love to help you out. Even if you don’t want to start a club, just putting on one event on your school or campus would raise so much awareness. Not to mention it’ll look great on your resume.
  2. Keep an eye out for suspicious behavior. The 24-hour hotline number for the National Human Trafficking Resource Center is 1.888.373.7888. Even if you call doesn’t help save any one person, it would help inform law enforcement in your area that human trafficking might be taking place there, which could help beef up there efforts and keep their eyes open. Here’s a great PDF about identifying victims of trafficking.
  3. Donate. There are literally thousands of amazing organizations around the world aimed at combating human trafficking and modern slavery. Here are a handful worth considering: Free the Slaves, International Justice Mission, Chab Dai, Polaris Project, Stop the Traffik, Tronie Foundation, Shared Hope International.
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Responses

  1. Great post! Your fight against human trafficking is analogous to my devotion to stop domestic violence. If only all the world’s strifes could be healed by eating chocolate (albeit, now, in a discriminatory fashion).

    • I really think that everyone needs a cause to be passionate about. One person at a time will change the world.


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