Sex Trafficking: International Context and Response

Sex Trafficking: International Context and Response

Sex Trafficking: International Context and Response

Sex Trafficking: International Context and Response

Synopsis

Trafficking in persons, particularly the trafficking of women into sexual servitude (sex trafficking) has generated much attention over the past decade. This book provides a critical examination of the international and national frameworks developed to respond to this issue - focused both on the design of policy responses and their implementation. Uniquely it brings together, and brings to life, the voices of policymakers, non-government agencies and trafficked women. The analysis is grounded in rich empirical work and research in Europe, Asia, Australia and North America.

This book examines how sex trafficking has been mobilized within anti-trafficking policies across the globe and offers a close examination of the dominant international framework, drawing upon a rich and diverse set of case studies: Australia, Serbia and Thailand. This analysis draws upon over 100 interviews with trafficking 'experts' across the three nations-including policymakers, police, immigration authorities, socialworkers, lawyers, UN agencies, local and international NGOs, activists. Critically, it also draws upon the voices of women who have been trafficked.

Excerpt

At a time when the security of the Global North is exponentially increasing the insecurity of the Global South, we need a more robust critical criminological and feminist agenda to recast the problem of sex trafficking and our expectations of global mobility and control. Sex trafficking can and does result in extreme forms of gendered exploitation that cannot and should not be dismissed. Recognition of and response to the many and varied forms of this exploitation and its impact on individual lives, communities and international relations are integral to building a comprehensive understanding of gendered exploitation. However, there are other parts of this picture that are less recognised and often fail to be included in defining the problem of sex trafficking and determining responses to it. Sex trafficking can and does result in state approaches that prohibit women’s mobility, their agency and their potential. This book redresses the imbalance of perspectives on sex trafficking without silencing inconvenient stories of either suffering or of agency, and it does so by locating individuals and groups of women at the centre of increased global mobility. It attends to the social context of women’s decisions to migrate, to engage in sex work, to move across borders in both authorised and unauthorised ways, as well as their decisions to work with and against criminal justice agencies and processes. It also outlines how the intertwining of feminist and neoliberal agendas is debilitating for women’s human rights and labour mobility and needs urgently to be recognised as a neo-colonial project in crime control.

Commentators too often talk about trafficking in persons when they are concerned solely with sex trafficking. We begin with the explicit acknowledgement that we are focusing on sex trafficking in order to interrogate what sustains the prevailing paradigm. We believe that the policy and legal debate around sex trafficking has been a lightning rod . . .

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