Monday, November 13, 2006
Wednesday, February 25, 2004
By JACKIE HALLIFAX
Associated Press Writer
February 25, 2004, 12:14 AM EST
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Modern-day slavery is alive and well in Florida, the head of a human rights center said Tuesday as it released a report on people forced to work as prostitutes, farmworkers and maids across the state.
Human traffickers bring thousands of people into the United States each year and Florida is believed to be one of the top three destinations, along with New York and Texas, according to the Center for the Advancement of Human Rights at Florida State University.
Although there have been several prosecutions of human trafficking in Florida, no one knows how many people in Florida are under the control of traffickers, said Terry Coonan, the center's executive director.
In south Florida, federal prosecutions have indicated hundreds of farmworkers were victims of human trafficking, and a forced prostitution ring identified as many as 40 young women and girls brought from Mexico. The center also cited a case of "domestic servitude" in southwest Florida.
But the problem is not limited to those areas or those industries, according to Robin Thompson, director of the research project.
"All you have to do is look where cheap labor is required and where there is a potential for labor exploitation, which pretty much can put you anywhere in our state," Thompson said.
The center organized a "working group" of advocates and law enforcement officials to study the issue. The project was funded by a federal grant under a 2000 law designed to increase protections for victims of human trafficking.
The center's report emphasized that not all victims of human trafficking are illegal immigrants. Many enter the United States legally but because of their poverty or inability to speak English are exploited by traffickers.
And some victims are Americans, Thompson said, pointing to the homeless, addicted and runaways as potential victims for traffickers.
"The greater the awareness, the more likely these cases will be reported and prosecuted," Coonan told reporters. "This is almost an invisible crime because the victims are kept out of the public eye. We need to crack this code of silence."
On the Net:
Center for the Advancement of Human Rights:
Copyright © 2004, The Associated Press
Tuesday, December 02, 2003
Monday, November 10, 2003
Monica Carrasco is 16 years old, 5'5" tall, weighs 111 lbs (very thin), has brown eyes and black hair. She was last seen in Balmorhea, Texas, wearing a light colored nightgown. She has been missing since October 2, 2003.
Monica needs prompt medical attention.
May be wearing biege shirt and teal green shorts.
Pastor Gene Chapman
Friday, November 07, 2003
Pauline was last seen about midnight on December 22, 2002 at her home on Mac-Rae Lane near Old Seguin Rd. in San Antonio, Texas. She is 16 years old, with brown eyes and black hair. She is 5'4" tall, weighs 120 lbs. and was born on may 18, 1986.
Call: Heidi Search Center at 210-650-0428 or 1-800-547-4435.
Kirby Police: 210-661-8515.
Thanks, Pastor Gene Chapman. Please give the family hope or closure. firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, November 05, 2003
SDNP Info email@example.com
Mon, 13 Oct 2003 17:07:50
Millions forced into sex trade, enslavement each year: UNFPA report
Daily Times, Shahzad Raza
ISLAMABAD: Estimates of the number of women and children forced each
year into the sex trade and labour enslavement vary widely, ranging
between 700,000 and 4 million, the United Nations Population Fund
(UNFPA) state of population report for 2003
According to the report, a majority of these women and children are
trafficked either thorough coercion or abduction. The selling of young
women into sexual bondage, a serious violation of their rights and
threat to their health, has grown considerably over the past decade, it
Extreme poverty, the low status of women and girls, lax border checks
and the collusion of law enforcement agencies have all contributed to
the expansion. The smuggling of Pakistani children to Arab countries for
camel races is well known.
However, women trafficking for sex is lower in Pakistan than in
countries like India and Sri Lanka. According to some non-governmental
organisations (NGOs) pleading for women's rights, sex-purpose
trafficking has never been an issue in Pakistan.
The UNFPA report says that in Asia and Eastern Europe, girls as young as
13 are trafficked as 'mail order brides'. In India, an estimated two in
five sex workers are under 18. In Sri Lanka, a majority of child sex
workers are boys. According to a regional estimate, between 1 to 2
million men and women are trafficked from Asia each year.
The report says many women from the states of the former Soviet Union
are taken to Israel, other parts of the Middle East or Western Europe,
many under the age of 16. The justice system in many countries is more
likely to jail or expel the young women than to punish the traffickers.
It says that sexual violence is common in the lives of adolescent girls.
Studies in India, Jamaica, Mali, Tanzania and Zimbabwe found that
between 20 and 30 percent of adolescent girls had experienced sexual
In South Africa, 30 percent of young women indicate that their first sex
was coerced, the report says, adding that sexual violence undermines
girls' development by making it difficult for them to remain in school,
destroying their confidence in adults and peers and putting them at risk
of HIV/AIDS, unwanted pregnancy and short and long-term physical or