Child trafficking is the trade of children, where the children are subjected to exploitations sexually, as domestic slaves, as drug peddlers and traffickers and other types of illegal labor. Child trafficking is a burning issue all over the world. In some instances, desperate parents sell their children for money. Child trafficking happens with and sometimes without parents’ consent. Sometimes, parents are even forced to sell off their children. The government should come forward to protect children from exploitations such as trafficking by working on the risk factors such as poverty and discrimination by providing a living wage for parents who are below poverty line. There are cases where children leave their parents and homes, fooled by false promises of something alluring and lucrative.
In a report submitted by the International Labour Organization, it is estimated that 1.2 million children are trafficked each year.
Helping children who were the victim of child trafficking is very difficult given the fact that they were once controlled using fear, physical abuse, mind control, alienation, drugs, moving to foreign countries, stripped off passports and other identification documents and sometimes brainwashed into believing that authority figures such as police are bad guys.
Children rescued from child trafficking are often kept in places and environment that are rarely safe and qualified enough to have them. The two obvious options are traditional foster care and juvenile detention program. While foster care is not always prepared for traumatized victims especially victims that have been sold multiple times a day for sex, juvenile detention programs are unforgiving and rigid. The need of the hour is such an environment that will ensure more stability than foster care, which often shifts children from one home to another. In most cases, the children run away often back to the dangerous life and sometimes found to be a victim of alcohol or drugs on the streets or succumb to suicide.
The helping of trafficked children should start by identifying children who are under sort of slavery and children who look from out of the place. The next crucial step will be to rescue them and take them to a place or an environment where the restoration process can take place. Victims of child trafficking need a long term and stable environment to live in. They also need caregivers who would patiently help them with the transition from their past life of negative experiences to a healthy independent life. The children must have full support from medical, educational, emotional and legal assistance.
The caregivers should start by earning trusts of the children and build quality relationships with the children. The maturity levels will vary according to the ages of the children. Therefore, special care has to taken towards an individual child. The caregivers should be willing to listen and be very patient with the children. They must provide an environment where proper education will be given so that the children could forget their traumatized pasts and could be self-reliant adults. This can be done by empowering them with a good education.
One of the crucial parts of the battle against children trafficking is educating people against it and getting them to actively act against it.