Posted July 9, 2019 from Nigeria

Sex trafficking is human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation, including sexual slavery. Mark Klamberg states that sexual slavery is a particular form of enslavement which includes limitations on one's autonomy, freedom of movement and power to decide matters relating to one's sexual activity. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), there are 20.9 million people subjected to forced labour, and 22% (4.5 million) who are victims of forced sexual exploitation.

Victims of sex trafficking do not enjoy what they do. They are threatened,  manipulated, lied to, in debt bondage or coerced in any way to engage in commercial sex acts against their will. That is, sex traffickers don't seek the victims' consents before exploiting them, sexually or making them commercial sex workers. A victim, according to Wikipedia is forced, in one of a variety of ways, into a situation of dependency on their trafficker(s) and then used by said trafficker(s) to give sexual services to customers.

The International Labor Organization estimates that there are 4.8 million people trapped in forced sexual exploitation globally. The figure might look quite small compared to the population of the world but the act is barbaric which contributes to the menace of the society. The society is not safe for both women and children anymore because they are mostly victims of this uncultured act. Plus, we don't know who is next. It could be your loved one or the lady you have been admiring for a while now. 

Sex trafficking involves prostitution and pornography. That is, it is involving children, younger than 18 years of age and women and girls in prostitution and pornography. You are surprised? Why would children be involved in such? Children younger than 18 years cannot give consent. In respect to a fact on Focus on Family, it's stated that worldwide, almost 20% of all trafficking victims are children. However, in some parts of Africa, children are the majority (up to 100% in parts of West Africa). Also, human sex trafficking is the most common form of modern-day slavery. Estimates place the number of its domestic and international victims in the millions, mostly females and children enslaved in the commercial sex industry for little or no money.

A lady meets a long time friend. I mean they just got back from the states or wherever after a long time and after exchanging pleasantries, they find out that this lady is jobless. They tell her to get ready. She would be traveling with them in a month's time. All expenses paid! When she gets there, they would get her a job. Or still, a paying job awaits her. She's glad! Finally, she'd be leaving the country. How sad! The urge to living a better or improved life prompts her into sex trafficking? Well, maybe, yes. However, that is dependent on gender stereotypes. I'd explain. 

Women and girls are seen as sex objects! In fact, they are sex objects according to the stereotype, hence, they are the targets according to a report by Equality Now which  states that 20.9 million adults and children are bought and sold worldwide into commercial sexual servitude, forced labor and bonded labor. Women and girls make up 98 percent of the victims trafficked for sexual exploitation. Therefore, because they are sex objects, they are used without their consents to generate money according to ILO, the human trafficking industry generates a profit of $150 billion per year. Just imagine a world where women and girls are not seen as sex objects. Just imagine a world where both sexes know that sex is consensual and that one party is not doing the other a favour by having sex with them. Or imagine a world where the males are seen as sex objects. Won't they be the target of sex trafficking?

It's obvious that factors like desire to travel out; longing to live an improved life and the likes influence sex trafficking. However, it is important to know that sex trafficking begins with the stereotypes that women are sex objects, weaker vessels and the likes.

Sex trafficking is not limited to the borders. It happens in the state. You don't have to travel before you become a victim in reference to a known fact which states that though trafficking seems to imply people moving across continents, most exploitation takes place close to home. Data show intra-regional and domestic trafficking are the major forms of trafficking in persons. 

Therefore, to curb sex trafficking, we have to be rid detrimental stereotypes and restructure gender roles. Women are not sex objects! It takes consent to have sex and lack of consent to be raped or exploited. Women are not sex objects! Their consents should be sought before trying anything sexual with them. They are not different from human beings. They are as human as the men. 

Thank you for following. 

This story was submitted in response to Share On Any Topic.

Comments 10

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Tola Makinde
Jul 09, 2019
Jul 09, 2019

Thanks Latoria,
A lot of women including me from the begining have been naive and intimidated. I am so happy for the current shift and awareness. Men that you once feel safe with may suddendly turn around to take advantage of you. Women should never be seen as sex objects

Karen QuiƱones-Axalan
Jul 10, 2019
Jul 10, 2019

Hello, Latoria,

I hope with all rise of high technology, GPS, mobile apps, artitificial intelligence, and the like, we could easily detect/track trafficking in all forms. Thanks for writing about it. No, we are not sex objects. We never were.

Jill Langhus
Jul 10, 2019
Jul 10, 2019

Thanks for sharing your post, Latoria. Agreed. We can and never should be viewed as sex objects. It's an extremely harmful message and viewpoint to give out to the world. Nothing good comes of it, to be sure:-(

Jul 20, 2019
Jul 20, 2019

Laterly, bad people have progressed from bad to worst as the Bible stated.
However we must remember that their wickedness does not go unnoticed before God . Take for sharing.

Anita Shrestha
Oct 16, 2019
Oct 16, 2019

Thank you for sharing

Dec 15, 2019
Dec 15, 2019

Hi informative Latoria, thank you for shearing this topic, No we are not sex object. And anyone who use women as such has missed it and should be brought to justice.

Metiege Noel Eve
Feb 13
Feb 13

SEX is a beautiful thing and can be enjoyed by both parties when done with consent. When one party especially the woman is forced or lured into SEX without her consent it becomes criminal and must be condemned and the perpetrators brought to book. Women should be given the rights to make their own choices. Thank you sister for your write up.

laison sylvie
Feb 20
Feb 20

Women should never be seen as sex slaves. Rather, sex should pleasure them as an emotional need same as men.

Regina Afanwi Young
Feb 22
Feb 22

Thanks for sharing dear. Women have never been and will never be sex objects. We must fight against all this forms of Gender Based violence starting from our homes.

Anita Kiddu Muhanguzi

Hi Latoria
This is an interesting that every girl or woman should read. Women are not sex objects and they should never be forced into doing what they don't want to do.
As women we need to stand for and with our sisters and stop being judgemental.
Thanks for sharing and have a lovely day.