The following article was written by Steven Ertelt and taken from http://www.lifenews.com/2011/02/01/planned-parenthood-caught-on-video-covering-up-sex-trafficking/.
“ The nation’s largest abortion business has been caught in video in an undercover investigation covering up for and coaching a man and a woman posing as sex traffickers and inquiring about how to obtain abortions for the women they victimized.
The sting operation has the actors looking into testing for sexually transmitted diseases and contraception and birth control for their female underage sex slaves. Planned Parenthood officials say they want to help the pair make their whole operation “look as legit as possible.”
The pro-life student-led organization Live Action released the video footage this morning, which already received national attention when Planned Parenthood officials went public with information concerning their complaints to the FBI abut the undercover activity. The complaints were met with scoffs by those who believe the abortion business was trying to make itself look good after the fact.
In the video, the pair visit Planned Parenthood Central New Jersey’s abortion center in Perth Amboy and clinic manager Amy Woodruff, an LPN, warns the pimp and his prostitute to have their trafficked underage girls lie about their age to avoid mandatory reporting laws.
“Even if they lie, just say, ‘Oh he’s the same age as me, 15,’…it’s just that mainly 14 and under we have to, doesn’t matter if their partner’s the same age, younger, whatever, 14 and under we have to report,” Woodruff says. “Like on the paperwork there’s going to be a point that asks, uh, like are you sexually active, stuff like that … if they’re under a certain age… – you know, me and my other counselor, like for the most part we want as little information as possible – cause we don’t want to be involved…”
Woodruff also recommends how the pimp can get his prostitutes cheaper contraception by claiming they are “students.”
“If they’re minors, put down that they’re students. Yeah, just kind of play along that they’re students–we want to make it look as legit as possible,” Woodruff is caught saying in the videotape.
Woodruff also coaches the alleged sex traffickers on where to get an abortion that won’t be met with as much scrutiny, referring them to the New Jersey-based abortion business named Metropolitan Medical Association, where she says “their protocols aren’t as strict as ours and they don’t get audited the same way that we do.”
The Planned Parenthood official also coaches the alleged sex traffickers on how soon they can put underage female sex slaves back to work. The prostitute in the video asks how long after the abortion until the girls can have sex again, and, when Woodruff says “minimum of 2 weeks,” she asks what sex acts the girls could still do to make money.
“Waist up, or just be that extra action walking by” to advertise sex to potential clients, Woodruff advises.
Lila Rose, President of Live Action, a group that has also caught Planned Parenthood on tape covering up potential cases of sexual abuse of minors, lying to women about abortions, and gladly accepting donations for abortions specifically targeting black unborn children, says the actions the new video footage shows contains illegal activity on behalf of the Planned Parenthood staff. She accuses them of covering up sexual abuse, aiding and abetting statutory rape, minor prostitution, human trafficking, racketeering, and other crimes.
“This proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that Planned Parenthood intentionally breaks state and federal laws and covers up the abuse of the young girls it claims to serve,” she told LifeNews.com.
“Time and time again, Planned Parenthood has sent young girls back into the arms of their abusers. They don’t deserve a dime of the hundreds of millions they receive in federal funding from taxpayers. Congress must cease funding and the Department of Justice should investigate this corrupt organization immediately,” Rose added.
Planned Parenthood, in a Twitter response, shrugged off the video.
“Planned Parenthood is no stranger to the attacks of those who oppose sexual and reproductive rights. We’re still here, providing the care you need. That being said, back to business…,” the tweet said.
The videos feature a man named “Joe” acting as a pimp and an assistant named “Gia” who say they manage girls as young as 14 and 15 in the sex trafficking ring — including girls who are Asian or speak very little or no English. Some of the girls are allegedly in the United States illegally.
“One, minors are always accepted without parental consent,” the Planned Parenthood staffer responds. “The only thing you do have to be careful is if they are minor, we are obligated, if we hear any certain information to kind of report, so, the first thing that is, what if they do speak English or even Spanish, it doesn’t matter what they speak – if we’re going to have it translated, they just have to be aware, that they have to be careful with whatever – you know, I’m not going to be like leading — I’m don’t want to get anybody in trouble, it’s just…”
Sex trafficking is punishable under federal law and carries a potential life sentence, the organization notes. As a result, Live Action has sent the unedited footage it obtained at Planned Parenthood to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, NJ Attorney General Paula Dow, officials at the FBI and other law enforcement officials. The group requests federal and state investigations into Planned Parenthood’s sexual abuse and sex trafficking cover up.
When the information first surfaced about the sex trafficking coverup, Planned Parenthood officials told the Associated Press at least 12 of their abortion centers were visited by a man claiming to be a sexual trafficker of women who request abortions be performed on presumably pregnant clients. The clients, the man says, are either in the United States illegally or are minors. The man reportedly first inquired about treatment for a sexually transmitted disease and then detailed the alleged sex trafficking ring once granted a private conversation with Planned Parenthood staff.
The visits to the Planned Parenthood abortion centers reportedly occurred between January 11-15 at facilities in Virginia, Indiana, New York, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and Arizona.”
By Cassandra Clifford for ISN Insights
“People are comparatively cheaper than they were in the 1600-1800s, when slaves were purchased for life. Now ownership tends to last only a few months to a few years, making slaves cheaper to purchase and more easily disposable. In 1850 the purchase price of a slave in the southern US averaged the equivalent of $40,000 today. According to Free the Slaves, a slave today costs an average of $90. People have become a disposable commodity, cheap and easy labor one can just toss out when no longer needed. Globalization and the post-World War II population boom have increased access to, and lowered the cost of, transportation, which has in turn contributed to the increased levels of global slavery. Victims are often driven into slavery by severe poverty or acute need for economic gain. Additionally, the ethnicity of today’s slave is rarely important.
Slavery was first defined by the League of Nations in 1926 as a “situation where rights of ownership are exercised by one person over another.” Subsequently in 1956 the UN Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade and Practices similar to Slavery addressed slavery-like conditions, including debt bondage, serfdom and related practices. Human trafficking can take many forms and is a practice of using illicit means via force, fraud or coercion, for which a person is then held for the purpose of exploitation. The United Nations Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children, defines human trafficking in Article 3, and includes the ” practices similar to slavery, servitude or the removal of organs“, as well as the afore mentioned elements. Human trafficking does not require travel or transport from one location to another.
While human trafficking is often associated with poor countries, no state is immune – with every country across the globe categorized as a source, transit or destination for human trafficking. Modern slavery comes in various forms: sex trafficking and slavery; debt bondage/bonded labor; domestic servitude; involuntary servitude; child labor and child soldiering. In the case of sex trafficking, the victim is acquired for the purpose of sexual exploitation and/or commercial sex acts. Debt bondage, legally termed bonded labor, occurs when an unwarranted bond or debt, often inherited, is used to enslave an individual. Domestic servitude occurs when a person is enslaved in a private home and used for household chores and other violations. Involuntary servitude involves a situation in which laborers work under some form of physical or psychological force that prevents them from leaving. Chattel slavery is the long-term ownership of a slave and is most often racially based.
Estimates vary as to the number of modern-day slaves. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), there are 12.3 million adults and children who are trafficked around the globe for the purpose of forced prostitution, bonded labor and forced labor. Of these victims, the ILO estimates that at least 1.39 million are victims of commercial sexual servitude, both transnationally and within countries.
Those most victimized by human trafficking are women and children, with 56 percent of all forced labor victims women and girls. Kevin Bales, modern slavery expert and president of Free the Slaves, estimates the number to be 27 million, a figure widely accepted by NGOs. UNICEF estimates there are some 250,000 child soldiers globally, while Human Rights Watch puts the number at 300,000, with the majority, some 200,000, in Africa. Child soldiers are actively fighting in at least 30 countries around the world, according to both Amnesty International and UNICEF, and PW Singer estimates in his book, Children at War, that 43 percent of all armed organizations in the world use child soldiers, 90 percent of whom see combat.
The entire global economy is impacted by the use of slavery in the production of goods, such as cotton, tea, silk, coca, sugar, steal, carpets, diamonds, etc. The ILO report, Combating Child Labor in Cocoa Growing , estimates that 200,000 children work on cocoa farms in the Ivory Coast alone.
The sale of humans for profit is growing steadily around the globe, and is estimated to be a $31.7 billion industry, according to the ILO – making it the second largest criminal industry in the world, larger than the drug trade and soon to surpass the arms trade.
Toward an enhanced legal framework
Human trafficking poses both national and international human security risks, including threats to border security and human health, and thus calls for a concentrated worldwide effort to adequately dismantle the illegal markets. This must be done cohesively with the increased establishment and enforcement of laws that prosecute traffickers and provide protection and resources to survivors. Survivors of trafficking must first be treated as victims, as opposed to criminals. In many countries, when trafficking victims are found, they are jailed and deported to their home countries, and children are often placed in juvenile detention centers.
On a global scale, very few cases of human trafficking are successfully prosecuted under international or state law. However, while much remains to be done, especially in the establishment and enforcement of laws to protect victims, significant progress has been made in the last decade. In particular, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime operates under the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, which sets forth how to define, prevent and prosecute global human trafficking. The convention’s Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (2000) has established an international set of guidelines. Additionally, the UN Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea, and Air was established (2003-2004). The enforcement of both protocols is supported by the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (2007).
In addition to these international initiatives, a number of states have successfully sought to increase the number of prosecutions by creating and enhancing legislation. The US for example passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (2000), and its subsequent reauthorizations (2003, 2005 and 2008) have led to a number of successful prosecutions under US federal law, and a number of US states have passed successful state legislation.
How to win the battle
Organizations and governments must work from the bottom up, putting resources on the ground in the areas most affected. Organizations must therefore educate communities about the realities of trafficking, as well as offer alternative solutions and economic opportunities, such as sustainable trade skills, for vulnerable parties. Both children and adults in affected communities must be part of the process of finding alternative solutions and prevention programs. Enforceable laws must be passed to prosecute those involved on every level, and it is necessary that victims be given access to the tools and resources needed to establish the skills, knowledge and strength needed to avoid falling back into the trafficking market. There is an understated amount of both short- and long-term support and treatment services, including shelters, mental and physical health services available globally.
To sustainably bring an end to modern slavery, four main areas of focus must be addressed. First is the demand for inexpensively manufactured goods and sex services, since this demand is met by the cheap – or free – labor of those who are acutely economically vulnerable. Second, gender inequality and bias must be addressed in all countries to reduce the stigma and abuse of sexual exploitation. Third, there must be a unified international response to strategies of prevention and awareness, and, fourth, impunity must end, for victims will continue to remain silent and not seek medical, psychological or legal attention if they feel there is no available retribution or safe care. History has clearly illustrated that impunity for traffickers only serves to exacerbate its use.
Cassandra Clifford is the founder and executive director of Bridge to Freedom Foundation, which works to enhance and improve the services and opportunities available to survivors of modern slavery, and the children’s rights writer for the Foreign Policy Association Blog. She holds a Master’s in International Relations from Dublin City University in Ireland. ”
“If we want to stop slavery, argues Siddharth Kara, we need to treat it as a business
While it’s tempting to think of slavery as existing only in history books, the modern slave trade is booming. More than 27 million people are enslaved around the world, doing work for no pay as prostitutes, farm laborers, factory workers, or domestic servants, according to the advocacy group Free the Slaves. In fact, advocates believe the pace of enslavement has increased during the past two decades as the price of slaves has decreased — pushed along by globalization, higher poverty levels, and crumbling national borders.
A decade ago, Siddharth Kara, a former investment banker with a law degree and an MBA, had an insight: Slavery was primarily a business, and no one had done a comprehensive, strategic analysis of how that business worked. So he set out to understand the inner workings of the business models for three broad categories of slavery: human trafficking, forced labor, and bonded labor. He has visited 20 countries and interviewed more than a thousand current or former slaves, finding them in tea fields in Bangladesh, carpet factories in India, sex clubs in Moldova, and massage parlors in the United States.
He’s writing a series of three books on the subject; the first, “Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery,” came out last year. Modern sex trafficking, Kara concluded, is one of the most profitable businesses there is: He calculates its average profit margin at 70 percent. (By way of comparison, a top-performing company like Google has a profit margin of under 30 percent.) Traditionally, sex trafficking has been treated as a human-rights issue, and fought by addressing the poverty and gender inequality that make people vulnerable to being enslaved in the first place. But Kara believes that an economic approach is the most efficient way to undermine the industry.
Kara will soon bring his approach to the Kennedy School, where he’s helping to build a think tank on slavery and human trafficking, and where he spoke earlier this month at a film forum on human rights and sex trafficking. This interview was condensed from two separate conversations with Ideas.
IDEAS: Why is sex trafficking best fought as a business?
KARA: Contemporary forms of slavery…all function on a simple economic premise: maximize profit by minimizing or eliminating the cost of labor.
IDEAS: So what’s the business model?
KARA: The business model contains three essential steps: acquisition, movement, and exploitation. Sex trafficking is probably the most profitable form of slavery the world has ever seen, in that you can acquire or transport someone for a few hundred dollars, maybe a couple thousand dollars, and generate tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands….That’s the essential functioning and logic of the business model: low cost and risk to transport the slave, and immense profitability on the exploitation side.
IDEAS: What is the difference between this and typical prostitution?
KARA: Some people will argue that the difference is very slim. But in general you could construe sex trafficking as the profit-maximizing version of prostitution.
IDEAS: If it’s an international trade, what are the trade routes?
KARA: I’ve tracked down…routes from Central and Eastern Europe into Western Europe but via North Africa, and…throughout South Asia into India and vice versa. Literally you can’t find anyplace that isn’t connected to another in terms of contemporary human trafficking. And they’re increasingly sophisticated: multiple stops in multiple countries, as these organized crime groups further evolve the modes and means through which they can move and exploit human beings.
IDEAS: How do you go about disrupting the business?
KARA: The minute [you] pull someone out of a sex slave condition, [you’ve] cut off all future cash flows. In terms of a sex slave it’s 10, 15, 20, transactions a day, a week, a month, year after year. You’ve got to pull people out, care for them…and then prosecute and convict effectively. That means several things: fast track courts, judicial review, and an economic penalty regime that makes it uneconomic to be in this business. If you start to alter the landscape, then the perception by the offender is: This business doesn’t pay. Right now the perception is: Huge profit, almost no risk, I’m there. This is about money: It’s not cruelty for the sake of cruelty. I’ve met traffickers. Some of them are just mundane opportunists.
IDEAS: What about the customer side? How do you reduce demand?
KARA: Depending on which country you’re in, it takes 1.5 to 2 hours of work at that country’s per capita income to purchase 1 hour of sex from a sex slave. So you ask yourself, How many males will trade in 1.5 hours of salary to purchase sex? A huge number. If we were to revert back to where prices were a decade ago, by putting more cost and risk into the system…you [would] see a massive decrease in demand, because you’ve priced out of the market those low-wage consumers — like day laborers, taxi drivers, and tuk tuk drivers — who are now in the market.
IDEAS: Have you seen this kind of business-focused approach work against other crimes?
KARA: There’s no easy analogue to this crime. On the side of the offender, human sex trafficking is a very economically driven crime, but it’s also the aggregate of some of our most barbaric criminal offenses: rape, torture, abduction, battery, assault, administering noxious substances, homicide. The fact that the penalties for the crime of sex trafficking are largely less than the penalties against some of these individual components is mystifying. At many levels we still haven’t grasped how this crime works, as an offense against a human being and as a business. And this is why the design of our responses has been severely lacking.
IDEAS: Should we shift resources away from more traditional ways of fighting the trade, such as alleviating poverty or fighting gender discrimination?
KARA: I don’t think so. I’ve run the numbers and my plan would probably cost about $400 million a year, and I think we should probably do this for at least 10 years. This is leveraging what’s already in place and what’s already being done. The resources are out there. It’s just a matter of priority.
IDEAS: What will it take to bring that kind of focus on the problem?
KARA: What the field needs is what other human-rights fields have:…highly trained economists, legal scholars, sociologists and anthropologists, experts in gender, child rights, et cetera, deploying their minds in a dedicated way to this issue. I think that’s starting to happen.
Katie Bacon, a journalist and editor based in the Boston area, has written for The New York Times, TheAtlantic.com, and other publications. “
I am Marti MacGibbon, survivor of human trafficking. That I survived places me among the ranks of the lucky. In 1985, I was an emerging standup comic with a scheduled appearance on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show. I thought I had it made – but soon became entangled in the San Francisco drug scene and developed an addiction, which made me vulnerable to traffickers.
I was trafficked from San Francisco to Tokyo and held in slavery for less than two months before a “customer” helped me to escape. Although brutal, demeaning and terrifying, the experience I lived through was mercifully brief. I am deeply grateful for my rescue, but the things that I endured have changed me forever. Yet I carry the realization that the happiness I experience today is not in spite of, but because of, the things I have overcome.
Rescue was only the beginning of my decades-long search for a safe place after such trauma. I suffered from post-traumatic stress. In those days, few resources were readily available. The term, “human trafficking” was not yet a part of the popular lexicon, and abolitionists had yet to gain the legislative victories of the ensuing decades. Distrust kept me from contacting the authorities; I dreaded reprisals from the traffickers.
I suffered in silence, desperately struggling to carry the pain, shame and fear that engulfed me. Nightmares ravaged my sleep. I used drugs in an attempt to manage my distress; my addiction nearly consumed me. For ten years, I could not find a safe place within myself.
But as I said, I am lucky. I eventually found love, recovery, self-acceptance, and healing. The first step in recovery from trauma is to find a safe place—first externally, then internally. Recovery from addiction was my first step to safety. With the help of support groups I learned valuable coping skills and stepped out of isolation.
I learned how to create a safe place within by allowing myself to study and utilize gratitude and serenity, then becoming conscious of the love and trust which binds the universe together. I engaged in therapy for PTSD, where I discovered how to create a safe place to heal, and how to use mindfulness meditation to manage fear.
As my healing progressed, I obtained education, training, and certification in substance abuse treatment. I’m dedicated to helping addicts break free, and devoted to the abolishment of modern slavery in all its forms. I have begun telling my story because I believe it may help to raise awareness about human trafficking and inspire others to join the fight.
Until I recounted the trauma in my memoir, ‘Never Give in to Fear,’ I’d kept my story secret. With healing, I came to believe that I needed to make my story known. Slavery is rampant today and fear and shame are the traffickers’ weapons. I will not be silenced by their arsenal. Finally, now that my book is out, the nightmares have ceased. My life is full of joy, love, and the optimism that courage brings.
I am deeply appreciative of Free the Slaves and other grass roots organizations for establishing safe places for those who have experienced misery and terror at the hands of traffickers. The goal of recovery is not merely to survive, but to thrive. Respect, consideration, dignity, and advocacy help lay the path to full recovery, and the people at Free the Slaves work hard to provide such resources.
Posted by Marti MacGibbon on December 9th, 2010 @ http://ftsblog.net/2010/12/09/slavery-is-rampant-fear-and-shame-are-traffickers-weapons/
Not prostitution this time, but young African teen girls worked in American mall hair salons as corn-rower creators.
Braiding the hair of girls who could have been descendants of Africans enslaved in the US.
The girls’ families sent them to the United States after being assured they would receive a better education. But once they arrived, they were forced to work in hair braiding shops across the Newark area — just a short drive from New York City, right in the shadow of the Statue of Liberty.
“My dad … worked hard so I could go to school, so when my auntie came and told my family that I could go to a school in the U.S. … they trusted her,” she said. “Everyone was happy about it.”
The girls worked in the salons right out in the open, in front of customers. They were on their feet all day, sometimes for more than 12 hours, weaving intricate and elaborate hair braids, seven days a week.
This went on for more than five years.
At times, they were forced to braid the hair of American teenagers no older than they were — girls who were free and had no idea the people braiding their hair were slaves.
In one of the many ironies in the case, the customers whose hair was braided by the slave girls were mostly African-American women, many of whom could have been descendants of slaves brought to America generations ago.
After months of surveillance, the ICE agents raided the houses in 2007. Inside, they found the girls and mattresses on the floor. The traffickers had hidden bags of cash and the girls’ passports.
Peter Edge, who led the team of agents, said none of the girls’ customers ever called officials to help.
“Hundreds of people came into these salons, they probably witnessed things out of the ordinary,” said Edge, special agent in charge of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations in Newark.
“These girls were shielded from the outside world, virtually hidden in plain sight … from everything else that was around them.”
Edge and the girls said several customers asked about the girls’ ages, and the girls — following the orders of their captors — lied and said they were 18.
“I wish one of my customers … would have gone to police,” Nicole said. “I wish they would have helped me.”
Posted by kinziblogs on December 4th @ http://kinziblogs.wordpress.com/2010/12/04/hidden-in-plain-sight-modern-day-slavery/