My husband and I have been crying out to God to lead us in all aspects of our lives. We want what He wants for us. So we've been praying ceaselessly. Our hearts are aching, a void that nothing else can fill but the desire to go and do exactly as He leads. His direction is not clear. His voice has not resounded in my ears, obvious course. I am growing, becoming more aware that His leading may become apparent in ways that are not as conventional.
Years past, T.J. and I became aware of Human Trafficking and some organizations that work to intervene and assist in the lives of those that have been sold into slavery. I was completely engrossed in the dark, fully masked world of trafficking. I watched documentaries, did independent research, leaving still more questions unanswered.
Other causes crept in and trafficking slowly exited the scene; not my intention. Only very recently, has it become, again, a topic of conversation in our home.
The first thought replanted and I became even more interested, seeing this topic in many areas of life. You know how you see something once and then that subject repeats? That's how this is for me. God's put this in our tracks for some reason. My gut wrenched curiousity was sparked on the topic again. Seeing it now stirs emotions in me that had sadly become latent.
I started to see videos, shows, and documentaries on trafficking. Those feelings started to rise up in me again. I began to scour different resources for updated information. Statistics and overall trafficking has altered immensley since the last time I'd done research. I am by no means a self proclaimed expert on this topic. Do not rely solely on my inquiries on trafficking. Please!! There is SO much information available that this post doesn't even skim the depths.
There is NO WAY that I can condense all the (growing) facts into a single post. I'll attempt to give some highlights. Is there such a thing? "Lowlights."
What exactly is Human Trafficking? According to the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC),
"Human Trafficking is a crime against humanity. It involves an act of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harbouring or receiving a person through a use of force, coercion or other means, for the purpose of exploiting them."
From my understanding, Human Trafficking, cut and dry, black and white, is equivalent to slavery. SLAVERY?
When I reflect on that word, I think about the past. Not the present! But it is ever-present. It doesn't just occur in third world countries. It is happening here. In our "own backyard." Worldwide.
Here is a video on Human Trafficking. Needless to say, I'll go ahead and warn you that it is disturbing to watch. Please use discretion.
Video provide by:
The above video focuses on men, women, and children who are brought into the U.S. from other countries. However, victims also come from our neighborhoods. Sounds too blunt? It does to me too, but it is the truth. It really provokes fear.
Underground, because, while it is illegal, it only forces the acts to become more hidden, more disguised "in beauty."
They are lured into this hidden world by completely empty promises. Glitz, glamour, money, homes, family, sense of belonging. The list of reasons is expansive. Life of a slave, behind closed doors, living wide eyed, chained, scared, lonely, unfulfilled.
They are worked endlessly with little to no pay in return. The victims are persuaded more easily using language barriers, lack of understanding or familiarity of laws, and customs. They use these factors to coerce them into doing what they demand. Some of the products that we buy fund this free labor. Slavery.
Their families' lives are threatened if they refuse to comply with their requests.
One report on the Dr. Phil show noted that the victims would be beaten in one second by their "controllers" then held by them and told they were loved. A roller coaster of confused, mixed display of emotions; one promising and one knocking on death's door. A fact that was driven home to me was that these victims are often the ones that end up being viewed as the criminals. They are made to cover for the ones that rule their every move. Tricked into doing things that will cover their wrong doings. These women and children ought to be provided with help, resources, instead, they may be placed in jail. Wrongfully accused. Victims.
from the Dr. Phil Show
Below are some links that may provide some more in depth information. What can we do? There are so many ways in which you can help. The links below show a variety of ways to contribute or volunteer. Your efforts will support assisting those that are brought into this life of hell on earth.
An emphasis on the fact that this is only a snippet of resources available at your disposal.
Very profound part of the video from the Tampa Bay, FL area, this problem will not be solved, it won't be brought into the light if we turn our backs on it. Not until we give it a voice, uncover it, bringing it above ground, will things change.
It's terrifying, this unlawful act is a so uneasily detected; horrific cycle of abuse and torture in the worst sense. An ongoing vicious recycling of our sons, daughters, fathers, and mothers.