The Fight Against Vietnamese Sex Trafficking sign now

Vietnam is a source for women, and children trafficked for the purposes of forced labor and sexual exploitation. Vietnamese women and girls are trafficked to Cambodia, the Peoples Republic of China, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, Taiwan, and the Czech Republic for commercial sexual exploitation. A large percentage of the Vietnamese women who are trafficked to Taiwan are lured by fraudulent offers of employment or marriage to Taiwanese men.

Women are trafficked primarily to Cambodia and China for sexual exploitation and arranged marriages. Chinese police have stated that they have rescued more than 1,800 trafficking victims on the China-Vietnam border since 2001. Some women are also trafficked to Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, Thailand, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. There are also reports of some women going to Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, and China for arranged marriages who were victims of trafficking as well. The government estimates that approximately 10 percent of women in arranged marriages with Chinese men may have become trafficking victims. Some women and children are also victims of trafficking within the country - usually from rural to urban areas.

There are reports of women from Ho Chi Minh City and the Mekong Delta who married men from Taiwan and were forced into prostitution after their arrival in Taiwan. There has been reported trafficking of women to the Macau Special Administrative Region of China with the assistance of organizations in China that were ostensibly marriage service bureaus, international labor organizations, and travel agencies. After arrival, many women are forced into conditions similar to indentured servitude; some areforced into prostitution.

Poor women and teenage girls, especially those from rural areas, are most at risk for being trafficked. The Ministry of Public Security (MPS) and UNICEF research indicates that trafficking victims can come from any part of the country but are concentrated in certain northern and southern border provinces as well as the central province of Thanh Hoa. Some are sold by their families as domestic workers or for sexual exploitation.

In some cases traffickers pay families several hundred dollars in exchange for allowing their daughter to go to Cambodia for an "employment offer". Many victims go due to the strong pressure to make significant contributions to the family income. Others offer lucrative jobs by acquaintances. False advertising, debt bondage, confiscation of documents, and threats of deportation are other methods commonly used by traffickers, spouses, and employers.

Trafficking for the purpose of labor exploitation is covered under Vietnams Penal Code. In 2004-2005, the governments crime statistics office reported 142 prosecutions and 110 convictions specifically related to trafficking in women and children. While some local government officials reportedly profited from trafficking, there were no reported prosecutions of officials for complicity in trafficking. The government does not effectively control its long and porous borders.

Vietnam has a statute that prohibits commercial sexual exploitation and the trafficking of women and children with penalties ranging up to 20 years imprisonment. Trafficking for the purpose of labor exploitation is covered under Vietnams Penal Code. Vietnams revised labor code has provisions that allow workers to negotiate settlements from labor export companies in cases of fraud or abuse, although precise statistics on these actions were not provided. [Information provided by www.humantrafficking.org]

Although the Vietnamese government has taken steps to provide greater protection for their workers, it is a fight that needs to be taken up by neighboring countries and nations worldwide. We, as American citizens, take a stand to combat such human trafficking. The fact that there have been instances on our very own shores is unexceptable. We hereby take a stand against human trafficking, specifically instances of sexual exploitation, and demand that our government take all possible course of action to help prevent it. UNICEF has addressed the problem, and we feel that the government is responsible to see to it that it be further diminished.

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Candace RojasBy:
International PolicyIn:
Petition target:
U.S. Congress

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