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販賣人口在美國泛濫成災,已成為一個巨大的產業

Jaclyn Gallucci 2019年04月20日

在全球范圍內,人口販賣如今已成為一個數十億美元的產業,而且相關案件在美國呈增長趨勢。

明尼蘇達州貝拉普蘭尼。告示牌顯示了美國性奴隸所帶來的影響。圖片來源:Education Images UIG via Getty Images

奴隸在美國這個自由國度依然健在。在全球范圍內,人口販賣如今已成為一個數十億美元的產業,而且相關案件在美國呈增長趨勢。有這么一個說法:大多數女性之所以從事性交易是出于自愿,維權人士正在試圖推翻這一理論。

在被販賣后從事性交易的尼克·貝爾稱:“賣淫的那些人并非是為了籌集學費而遲遲不去上耶魯,事實并非是你看到的那樣。我們說的是那些貧民、有色人種以及那些離開寄養系統的人。”

貝爾是于上周五在曼哈頓參加全球女性峰會時說的這番話,她的身旁是一群維權人士。貝爾如今是Living in Freedom Together (LIFT)的創始人及首席執行官。該機構是由幸存者領導的一家機構,致力于幫助個人擺脫以營利為目的的性剝削。

貝爾說:“雖然我們將賣淫與人口販賣看作是兩種不同性質的事情,但大多數性交易工作者都經歷過某種形式的人口販賣。大多數人都是在還沒有到獲準發生性關系的年齡之前便被卷入了這個行業,何況販賣的目的就是從事性交易。”

國際勞工組織稱,據估計,每一年全球人口販賣的利潤約為1500億美元,其中990億美元來自于性剝削。Polaris Project稱,全美人口販賣熱線和BeFree Textline在2017年收到了近9000例案件舉報,較上一年增長13%。但這個數據并不完整,因為有眾多的案件并未得到舉報。

麥凱恩研究所的人口販賣顧問理事會主席辛迪·麥凱恩說:“這不僅僅是一個重要的問題,而是已經泛濫成災。可謂是堂而皇之,無處不在,真的隨處可見。”

美國總統唐納德·特朗普曾經表示,自己有關在南部邊境筑墻的議案對于終止人口販賣有著重要作用,但麥凱恩稱,這個是美國國境之內存在的問題。

麥凱恩說:“總統住在幻想國。這些被販賣的孩子都生活在美國本土,他們位于美國境內,而且被人從一個州賣到另一個州。”

脆弱人群養成通道

Developmental and Forensic Pediatrics的創始人及首席執行官沙隆·庫珀博士稱,導致這些脆弱的兒童發展成為脆弱成年人的一些最關鍵因素包括貧困、無家可歸、家庭虐待、寄養系統以及性行業的美化,最終也就形成了一個“脆弱人群養成通道”。

庫珀說:“我們看到,兒童在被帶入人們所稱的‘生活’之前會面臨著很大的風險。他們確實接受了各種各樣的洗禮,有些來自于社會,有的來自于廣告,有的則是他們自己通過社交媒體得到的見聞,因此,我們必須未雨綢繆,盡早制止這一現象。”

通過LIFT,貝爾開始與女囚這類很容易遭到性販賣的人群合作。

貝爾說:“看看我們的監獄系統就會知道,它實際上就是一個脆弱人群池塘。患有濫用藥物紊亂癥的女性,沒有任何家人支持的女性,無家可歸的女性,如果想尋找一名受害者,只需要讀讀法庭證詞記錄即可……然后為她們提供一條出路。”

不要以為你所在的州就是清白的。2018年通過全美人口販賣熱線舉報的5147例人口販賣案件涉及了美國的各個州。

庫珀說:“公眾認為,女童販賣出現在市中心。我們曾經看到過一些案件,一些女童被帶到了農場,然后賣給了移民過來的農民,為了讓她們順從還給她們灌了藥。我們還看到,一些一直生活在收容所的女童會離開收容所上街頭走走,但這家收容所已經成為了人販子的目標,他們隨后會開車來到街頭,對女孩們說,‘嗨,我這里有份工作,有小費可賺。’如果你向無家可歸的孩子提供這類機會,他們絕對會認為這是真的,而且也會覺得這是一份正經工作。”

賣淫對性販賣

庫珀博士經常治療因性行為而受到心理創傷的兒童,并在法庭作證來幫助懲罰那些讓這些兒童成為受害者的罪魁禍首。

庫珀說:“當前,人口販賣案件已經不是什么新鮮事情,當我在這些案件中作證時,我明顯地意識到,法官和陪審團并不知道賣淫和性交易販賣之間有什么區別。”

盡管賣淫被定義為:通過性來換取金錢、藥物或影響力,而且發生在兩個自愿的成年人之間,但這種同意也是可以被授予的,因為人口販賣意味著存在第三方的控制。

她說:“一旦有人通過出賣這些人的肉體來牟利——通常是那些不得不進行10、12、15次性交易的兒童,而且有時候實際上屬于性侵——就會構成性販賣罪。”

貝爾說,這些兒童通常會淪落為成年妓女,有很多人只是把賣淫看作是一種工作上的選擇。

她說:“性販賣兒童受害者和性販賣成年人受害者之間的區別也就只有60秒。在我18歲之后沒有發生任何變化,我依然是受害者。這種事情依然并非出于我自己的愿望。我大部分的成年生活都與賣淫有關,有時候會受到第三方的剝削,有時候則因為我覺得沒有其他退路,或在這個世界上沒有什么存在價值。”

貝爾正在努力實現賣淫的合法化,但卻呼吁加重對性交易購買方的懲罰,因為女性性工作者通常會面臨牢獄之災,但男性卻通常只是受教育干預而已。

但這種情形開始發生變化。

麥凱恩在談及亞利桑那州時指出:“如今,我們把他們的車沒收了。因此,這些家伙回家后就得向其最重要的另一半——妻子,或者向其老板,或者其他任何人解釋為什么車被沒收了。這一舉措十分奏效。”

在洛杉磯之類的其他城市,那些因購買性服務而被捕的人士會發現自己的名字出現在告示牌上。貝爾說,她所在的機構LIFT會向那些被捕人士的家里寄送明黃色的明信片。

但維權人士說,終止性販賣的最好的方法就是防止其發生。

麥凱恩說,請確保對我們的檢察官、法官、醫生、第一發現者進行培訓,讓他們學會應該調查什么內容,以及當他們看到人口販賣時該怎么做。這一點是打擊人口販賣最重要的一個環節,但它并沒有聽起來那么簡單。

對于學校來說,與兒童討論性問題并不一定是個受歡迎的話題,即便只是進行安全教育亦是如此。

麥凱恩說:“我在去過的地方都會遇到這個問題。這并非是性教育,這是為了拯救生命。”

麥凱恩研究所正在支持一項研究,以便獲得美國境內更加完整和可靠的人口販賣數據,從而更有針對性地開展意識和預防培訓。麥凱恩還鼓勵民眾,尤其是女性,在其社區中未雨綢繆,尋找可利用的資源來預防性販賣的發生,并幫助受害者。

麥凱恩說:“這基本上是男人的問題。女人,則需要記住這一點。”(財富中文網)

譯者:Pessy

審校:夏林

Slavery is alive and well in the land of the free. With human trafficking now a multi-billion-dollar industry worldwide and cases increasing in the United States, activists are trying to squash the myth that most women who work as prostitutes do so because they want to.

“Prostitution isn’t people deferring entrance to Yale while they prostitute to raise money for tuition—that’s not the reality of what it looks like,” said Nicole Bell, who worked as a prostitute after being trafficked as a teen. “We’re looking at people in poverty, people of color, people coming out of the foster care system.”

Bell, who spoke alongside a panel of activists at the Women in the World Summit in Manhattan last Friday, is now the founder and CEO of Living in Freedom Together (LIFT), a survivor-led organization that helps individuals exit the world of commercial sexual exploitation.

“We look at prostitution and trafficking as two different things, but most people in prostitution have experienced trafficking in some form,” Bell said. “Most were brought into this before they were old enough to consent to have sex—never mind to being sold for sex.”

Human trafficking is estimated to bring in global profits of about $150 billion a year—$99 billion from sexual exploitation, according to the International Labor Organization. Nearly 9,000 cases in the U.S. were reported to the National Human Trafficking Hotline and BeFree Textline in 2017—a 13% increase from the prior year, according to the Polaris Project. But this data is incomplete, as cases are severely underreported.

“This is not only a dominant issue, it’s an epidemic issue,” Cindy McCain, who chairs the McCain Institute’s Human Trafficking Advisory Council said. “It’s also something that is hiding in plain sight. It’s everywhere—it’s absolutely everywhere.”

President Donald Trump has said his proposed wall at the Southern border would have a huge effect on ending human trafficking, but McCain said the problem is within our own borders.

“He’s living in Disneyland,” McCain said. “These kids that are being trafficked are domestic. They are within the United States and they’re going from state to state.”

A Pipeline of Vulnerability

Some of the biggest factors that lead vulnerable children to become vulnerable adults are poverty, homelessness, abuse at home, the foster system, and glamorization of the sex industry, what is essentially a “pipeline of vulnerability,” said Dr. Sharon Cooper, founder and CEO of Developmental and Forensic Pediatrics.

“What we see is that children are at great risk to be brought into what’s referred to as ‘the life’,” said Cooper. “They are really groomed, sometimes by society, by the advertisements, by what they see on social media, and therefore we have to be very proactive to make this stop.”

Through LIFT, Bell works with incarcerated women, another group hugely vulnerable to sex trafficking.

“When you’re looking at our prison system, it’s literally a fish pool of vulnerabilities,” said Bell. “Women with substance abuse disorder, people who don’t have any family support, homelessness—if you want to find a victim, all you have to do is go through the court transcripts … and offer them a way out.”

And don’t think your state is immune. Of the 5,147 human trafficking cases reported in 2018 through the National Human Trafficking Hotline, not one state was excluded.

“The general public thinks that trafficking of girls occurs in inner cities,” said Cooper. “We’ve seen cases where girls were taken to farms and sold to migrant farmers, drugged in order to become compliant. We’ve seen girls who have been living in homeless shelters, and who come out of the homeless shelter just to walk down the street, but that homeless shelter has been cased by traffickers who will then drive down the street and say, ‘Hey I have a job for you and you can get the tips.’ This is the kind of thing if you offered to a homeless child they would will absolutely believe is authentic and is an okay thing to do.”

Prostitution vs. Sex Trafficking

Dr. Cooper often treats sexually traumatized children and testifies in court to help prosecute those who victimized them.

“When I’m testifying in a trafficking case, which is fairly common these days, it’s really clear that judges and juries do not really understand the difference between prostitution and sex trafficking,” said Cooper.

While prostitution is defined as the exchange of sex for money, drugs, or influence between two consenting adults—where consent can be given—human trafficking means there is third-party control.

“Whenever someone else is getting that money on the backs of those individuals—often children who are having to perform 10, 12, 15 sexual acts, and actually being sexually assaulted, at a time—that constitutes sex trafficking,” she said.

And these children often end up the adult prostitutes, who many assume are just making a job choice, said Bell.

“The difference between a child victim of sex trafficking and an adult victim of sex trafficking is 60 seconds,” she said. “Nothing changed as I turned 18 years old. I was still being victimized. It still was not something I wanted to be doing. I spent the majority of my adult life involved in prostitution, sometimes with a third-party exploiting me and sometimes because I didn’t feel like I had any other options or any other worth in this world.”

Bell is working to decriminalize the act of prostitution, and advocates instead for harsher penalties for those who purchase sex, because while female sex workers often face jail time, johns are often given educational intervention.

But things are starting to change.

“We take their cars away from them now,” said McCain, referring to the state of Arizona. “So these guys have to go home and explain to their wife, their significant other, to their boss, whatever it may be, why they don’t have a car anymore. And it’s working beautifully.”

In other cities, like Los Angeles, those who get arrested for buying sex might find their names printed on billboards. And Bell said her organization, LIFT, sends bright yellow postcards to the homes of those caught buying sex.

But the best way to end sex trafficking, activists say, is preventing it.

Making sure our prosecutors, judges, schools, doctors, first responders, are trained on what to look for and what to do when they see human trafficking, is the most important piece of combatting it, said McCain—but that can be harder than it sounds.

Schools aren’t always welcoming when it comes to speaking to children about sex, even when it is a safety issue.

“I’ve run into this everywhere I go,” said McCain. “This is not sex ed, this is saving lives.”

The McCain Institute is supporting research to get more complete and reliable data on human trafficking in the U.S., in order to better target awareness and prevention training. McCain also encourages people, especially women, to be proactive in their communities and see what resources are available to both prevent sex trafficking and help victims.

“This is very much a man’s issue,” said McCain. “Women, we need to take hold of this.”

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张鸿林为什么会不打cba