Human trafficking in Argentina and the world

I love living in Argentina; perhaps even more so because my time is coming to an end. Who wouldn’t love a living in a beautiful country with warm people who enjoy lively conversations over meals of steak and red wine? I do have to point out that I have no love for the way that some of the people exoticize and even demean me sometimes as they assume that that outward ethnic appearance means that I am a prostitute.

A fellow BC blogger wanted to know if the experience would prompt me to write about racism in Latin America. While racism may be partly to blame, I think that people associate my racial appearance with the rampant human trafficking that brings thousands of Dominicans, Brazilians and people of other nationalities, often to work as prostitutes. Unfortunately for many here, being of African descent and female is associated with prostitution and sexual slavery.

Argentina does not have specific laws addressing human trafficking. While the human trafficking circles do treat Argentina as a destination, there are also trafficking rings that move people within the country, totaling an estimated 2.4 million people traded for labor and sexual exploitation. Women and girls from economically depressed regions are either kidnapped or enticed by too-good-to-be-true job offers. Awareness has been elevated to a popular culture level. One of the most popular evening telenovelas here, Vidas Robadas, centers on internal human trafficking in Argentina.

The dedicated passion of activists such as Susana Trimarco de Veron have helped to bring the issue front and center on Argentina’s national agenda. A campaign called “No to Human Trafficking, No to Modern-day Slavery” started last year recruited Uruguayan singer and actress Natalie Oreiro to be an advocate for raising awareness and sparking further action to end human trafficking in Argentina.

Thanks to Social Butterfly, I learned about a documentary that premiered late this summer called Call+Response that attempted to raise awareness about modern-day slavery and abolitionist efforts. Knowing that lack of economic opportunities leaves already vulnerable members of society subject to people that prey on them, poverty reduction is sure to be a key goal for eliminate human trafficking and sexual slavery. Women will have other options to earn incomes to support their families rather than relying on promises to take them away from a life of poverty.

Here are some organizations that I found via that work to end human trafficking:

Equality Now
Polaris Project
Barnaba Institute
The SAGE Project


7 comments so far

  1. seekingthecranberry on

    I love your blog. I am also part of the Change Blogger network. We are organizing a Philadelphia contingent right now.

    I look forward to reading more….


  2. Vanessa on

    Thanks for reading! I will be sure to connect with you on the Changeblogger network. I will be living in Houston for the next year, so I want to see about organizing a Texas-wide chapter at least. People are a bit spread out in the south.

  3. Lauren Zaffos on

    Wow Vanessa. Thanks for sharing. Peter and I are moving to Honduras next summer, and have been warned about kidnapping incidents similar to that of Argentina. I would love to keep up/be involved with your “Texas-Chapter” whenever you get it organized. For so many in the States, this is such an “out of sight, out of mind” matter…thanks for having a desire to bring awareness to issues such as these. You’re amazing! I love reading your blog 🙂

  4. Vinayak Rajesekhar on

    Thank you vanessa. You have really provided an in-depth analysis of human trafficking. I would be really appreciative if you could email me some more of the rpoblems argentina is facing due to human trafficking.
    Thanks once again.

  5. Sammyj- student on

    hi, i’m doing human trafficking in Argentina as a topic for my oral paper in Spanish. your blog above has been really helpful as it was what inspired me to choose this topic in the first place… However, can u provide me with some more up-to-date information about the issue right now. I am doing research but, i am hardly finding recent information. so, if u can email me some recent info or something, i will be eternally greatful…. If the matter has been resolved (though i doubt it has), maybe you can suggest another issue that i can do for my exam? lol. please contact at me as soon as possible. i have very little time. thank you!

  6. prosper on

    please an representing Argentina in Model United Nations conference on Human trafficking can you please supply me with up to date information on the topic thanks

  7. rads on

    hey me too representing argentinian human trafficking for MUN…plzz help…wth data and statistics..

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