COLUMN: Trafficking of humans needs to stop now

Nedda Pourahmady

Many inhumanities exist in today’s society. Racist behaviors remain prevalent in areas across the country. Behind closed doors, women and children are suffering as a result of domestic abuse. Nevertheless, there is yet another epidemic in society so severe that it has become a worldwide dilemma.

According to, human trafficking is the “transportation of people for forced labor, sexual exploitation or other illicit activities.” More than one million people are trafficked annually around the world, and some experts say the total could actually be double that amount.

As stated on the site, organized crime syndicates and businessmen have reaped massive benefits from human trafficking. Poverty and the shortage of jobs in many countries make women and children potential victims of traffickers. These traffickers make false promises of job opportunities in other countries.

Human trafficking is not just limited to sexual exploitation. As reported by, it also includes being forced into marriages or bonded labor markets, such as sweat shops or domestic services.

Here in the United States, we take our comfortable lives for granted. Americans are simply blinded by the fact that people across the world actually live in these unthinkable conditions.

This epidemic has become increasingly widespread. According to the Administration for Children and Families, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, human trafficking is tied with arms dealing as the second largest criminal industry in the world, and is growing at a rapid pace.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime points out women and girls are especially attracted to traffickers. They are drawn in by the false promises of well-paying jobs in other countries as a domestic servant, waitress or factory worker. These traffickers ultimately lure their victims in by means such as fake advertisements or mail-order bride catalogues.

The victims of human trafficking are often placed in unbearable conditions. The UNODC further states many of these people are put into confinement under careful supervision by their traffickers. Oftentimes, their travel and identity documents are taken away from them. The traffickers threaten their victims by telling them they will be prosecuted or deported if they try to seek help.

Because this problem is so widespread, an enormous amount of people are trafficked around the world each year. According to the U.S. Department of State, about 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked each year across national borders. The State Department also states human trafficking is a three-way threat. It takes away people’s human rights and freedoms, is a worldwide health risk and promotes the growth of organized crimes.

Although human trafficking has been documented by several organizations in the United States, I feel there is more we can do as a nation to aid in combating this issue. We should all pitch in and take preventative measures to ensure this problem doesn’t become even worse.

This worldwide epidemic is an atrocity to mankind. If we don’t seek a solution now, several more undeserving people will fall victim to this crime. Human trafficking has remained under wraps for far too long, and it’s time that we work together to put an end to this inhumanity.

Nedda Pourahmady is a junior newspaper journalism major and a columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].