The Fight Against Human Trafficking

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The history of human trafficking

1400s-1600s
Although forms of slavery existed before the 1400, the 1400s marked the start of European slave trading in Africa with the Portuguese transporting people from Africa to Portugal and using them as slaves. In 1562, the British joined in on the slave trade in Africa. The development of plantation colonies increased the volume of the slave trade. Later on throughout the 1600s, other countries became more involved in the European slave trade. These included Spain, North America, Holland, France, Sweden, and Denmark.

1904
In 1904, the International Agreement for the Suppression of "White Slave Traffic" was signed and put into action. The purpose of this agreement was to protect women, young and old, from being involved in "white slave traffic." White slavery referred to forcing or deceiving a white woman or girl into prostitution. Some people argue, however, that this act was only put into place in order to control the number of European women who were seeking to find jobs abroad. Still, the agreement stands as a moral action against the trafficking of women.

1927
The League of Nations was founded after the WWI, and had the goal maintaining world peace and also focusing on international issues such as human trafficking. The Suppression of White Slave Traffic was changed to "traffic in women and children" so that everyone was included with no discrimination to race ("When"). Children of both genders were also recognized as victims of trafficking. In addition, two major studies were conducted, one in the West and one in the East, in an attempt to find out the real status of trafficking in these areas. Factors that were measured included the number of women engaged in prostitution, the demand, and the surrounding environment of the women who were trafficked. Information was also gathered about the traffickers (Kangaspunta). This was a step toward gaining more insight about the issue of human trafficking....
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