HOW WORKERS ARE TRAFFICKED INTO THE U.S. – THE UGLY TRUTH
“Modern slavery” has become such a large industry, that it is now found almost everywhere. From getting our nails done to having a clean hotel room, forced labor is something many Americans fail to recognize. Victims who tell stories of working long hours with no pay help us realize how easy and common it is for people to be trafficked into the U.S.
“It’s astonishing, really, just how easy it is for unethical labor recruiters to prey on people, trick them into paying large sums of money to secure ‘good jobs in the United States’ where victims end up trafficked and trapped under debt bondage with no documents to establish identity or legal status, no English skills, and no easy means of escape.”
A lack of regulation on foreign labor recruitment is what prevents these cases from being stopped. Unfortunately, the Fraudulent Overseas Recruitment and Trafficking Elimination Act (FORTE), did not pass when introduced to Congress. “Such legislation would deter human trafficking, forced labor and exploitation in part by increasing transparency for overseas workers, providing them with accurate information about the job, visa, and other terms and conditions of work in the United States. It would also require registration of foreign labor recruitment agencies at the Department of Labor, and prohibit recruitment fees paid by workers.”
Assisting victims is another goal the United States should strive for. While there are some shelters and immediate services offered to victims, space is limited and long-term support is rare. Many victims never receive the help they need to get back on their feet, which leads to a life of poverty with a high chance of being trafficked again.
Although the State Department’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report ranks the U.S. as a Tier 1 nation, the country has to continually improve its efforts to combat human trafficking. As a country, we should encourage Congress to be more committed to ending forced labor, and pass laws that will prevent workers from being trafficked across our border.
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