Human Trafficking, also referred to as modern-day slave trade, has been defined by the United Nations Palermo Protocol as, “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons, by means of threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of abuse of power or of position of vulnerability or of the giving and receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation. Exploitation shall include, at a minimum, the exploitation of the prostitution of others or other forms of sexual exploitation, forced labor or services, slavery or practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs (“Background”2014).” This multifaceted method of exploitation violates labor, public health, and human rights standards worldwide.
Human Traffickers include organized and sophisticated criminals, decentralized criminals, family members, small businesses, and individuals. In the United State it has been estimated that human trafficking produces as much as $44.3 billion annually. It has also been projected that 27 million people are currently being held in slavery worldwide (“Background”2014).
Traffickers target people who suffer from socio-economic inequalities. In the U.S. traffickers target people such as: runaways and at risk youth. These traffickers encourage their victims to trust them to lure them to a better life with desirable working conditions and safe and healthy environments.
In Texas, as well as worldwide, there are laws against this transgression. According to the Texas Penal Code, “§ 20A.02. TRAFFICKING OF PERSONS. (a) A person commits an offense if the person knowingly traffics another person with the intent that the trafficked person engage in: (1) forced labor or services; or (2) conduct that constitutes an offense under Chapter 43. (b) Except as otherwise, provided by this subsection, an offense under this section is a felony of the second degree. An offense under this section is a felony of the first degree if: (1) the offense is committed under Subsection (a)(2) and the person who is trafficked is younger than 14 years of age at the time of the offense; or (2) the commission of the offense results in the death
of the person who is trafficked. (c) If conduct constituting an offense under this section
also constitutes an offense under another section of this code, the actor may be prosecuted under either section or under both sections. Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 641, § 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003” (“Texas Constitution” 2014).
This paper will focus on human trafficking in Texas, more specifically, answering the question; How do the rates of human trafficking in Houston and Dallas differ? This paper will include three main areas: frequencies of reports of Human Trafficking measured, types of Human Trafficking reported, and measures taken by the two cities to combat Human...