This is a follow-up post to the post Human Trafficking – The Hush Hush
While we covered a lot in that post about human trafficking, there is a side that was not covered, which is what this post is about.
In SE Asia, there are a number of boiler room call centers that’s sole purpose is to extract money from unsuspecting victims. This can be in the form of wire transfer or in most cases, crypto currency. These boiler room call centers are high pressure and often lead to physical and daily psychological abuse. There are countless stories from survivors that tell the tale of being hit with a cattle prod, starved, beaten and there have been many reported cases of victims “accidentally” falling off the roof if the expected daily quotas were not met.
One such boiler room call center is called “Chinatown” in the city of Sihanoukville, Cambodia. Sihanoukville, also known as Kampong Som, is a coastal city in Cambodia and the capital of Preah Sihanouk Province, at the tip of an elevated peninsula in the country’s south-west on the Gulf of Thailand.
It’s also the home of one of the largest slave labor camps, as pictured above and below. In Chinatown, you will find among the noodle shops, convenience stores, barber shops; many of them with signage in Chinese, rather than the local Khmer; a series of compounds housing hundreds, if not thousands of trafficked victims, forced to grind out as many scams per minute as humanly possible.
You see, crypto currency is the preferred method of payment as it is almost impossible to trace and there is no “fraud protection” like what would be offered by a bank account or credit card.
On the other side of this operation is….You!. You are the recipient of the random text messages, emails, hijacked websites, etc. As everyone can attest, it is annoying at it’s least and highly burdensome at best.
The stark reminder that should be on everyone’s mind is, the trafficked victim on the other end of the line that it more than likely, fighting for their life, wondering “how in the hell did I get into this mess!?”
Maybe next time you get one of these text, you could reply “are you a trafficked victim?” While I’m very sure they line will go quiet from that point, you might also get a reply saying “yes” and they need money to get out of the jam they are in. Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing if they are lying to you or not. Best thing at that point would be to contact a victim trafficking organization, (links at the bottom of this writing) forwarding (or screen shots) to that organization. You never know, you might save a life.
For this writing, we are going to use a common scenario that is played-out in text messages. We’re going to pick a lovely young woman, who we shall call “Clair.” Without a doubt, she has a Japanese name – most certainly, her image has been spread all over the internet from dating sites to you name it – but for the sake of this post, Clair will do.
So you are sitting at a bar, watching a football game with a friend or maybe at a restaurant for an impromptu business meeting, when you get a text message from Clair. Clair says “Hi Sam, I’m Clair Chang, don’t you remember me?” I’m sure your first thought is going to be “hun? what?” But it goes on, as you reply that she has the wrong number, Clair apologizes. Then she awkwardly tries to continue the conversation. Instead of apologizing for the wrong number, she writes “can we be friends? lol.”
By this time, you are either curious or ready to slam your phone down as this has now turned in another pain in the ass. If you are the curious type, the conversation will continue with words like “where are from?, what do you do for work? etc.”
The end game and the fastest way to know is the fact that Clair doesn’t have much time, she is under heavy pressure to close the deal, much like you might be to close the deal at the dinner table you are sitting at. With that, in a few minutes, the word “money” will enter into the conversation. It could be for crypto investments or any number of other scenarios where there is dire need, urgency, to get money fast. “Close the deal!” her handlers bark.
It is very unfortunate that takes place in modern times, but again, we are here to talk about it.
Know someone that needs help, reach out to anyone of these organizations:
- UNTRAFFICKED, a domestic nonprofit, tax-exempt non-government organization in the United States established in 2020 that equips and mobilizes people to stop child sex trafficking and restore survivors – giving them hope for a brighter future.
- 8th Day Center for Justice, a Roman Catholic organization based in Chicago, Illinois
- A21 Campaign, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, non-governmental organization that works to fight human trafficking
- ACT Alberta, a Canadian coalition of Government of Alberta representatives, non-governmental organizations, community organisations, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police
- Action for Life, a non-profit, interfaith, volunteer organization that is dedicated to protecting and fostering the sanctity of life from conception until natural death
- After Exploitation, a nonprofit organisation tracking hidden evidence on the mistreatment of slavery survivors based in the UK
- Agape International Missions, a nonprofit organization in Cambodia
- Anti-Slavery International, works at local, national and international levels to eliminate all forms of slavery around the world
- Arizona League to End Regional Trafficking, a coalition representing partnerships with law enforcement, faith-based communities, nonprofit organizations, social service agencies, attorneys and concerned citizens
- Awareness Against Human Trafficking (HAART), a non-governmental organization fighting against human trafficking in Kenya
- A Better World, based in Lacombe, Alberta, Canada
- British Red Cross, the United Kingdom body of the worldwide neutral and impartial humanitarian network
- California Against Slavery, a human rights organization directed at strengthening California state laws to protect victims of sex trafficking
- Chab Dai, a coalition founded by Helen Sworn that connects Christian organizations committed to ending sexual abuse and trafficking
- Challenging Heights, a grassroots, survivor-led NGO dedicated to ending child trafficking, reducing child slavery, and promoting children’s rights in Ghana
- Coalition Against Trafficking in Women, an international non-governmental organization opposing human trafficking, prostitution, and other forms of commercial sex
- Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking, a nonprofit Los Angeles-based anti-human trafficking organization
- Covenant House, a large privately-funded agency in the Americas providing shelter, food, immediate crisis care, and other services to homeless and runaway youth.
- DeliverFund, a nonprofit intelligence organization that leverages cutting-edge technology in the fight against human trafficking in the US.
- Devatop Centre for Africa Development, a nonprofit organization in Nigeria with focus on combating human trafficking, gender-based violence, and child abuse; and providing educational support to vulnerable children
- Development and Education Programme for Daughters and Communities Centre in the Greater Mekong Subregion (DEPDC/GMS), a non-profit NGO based in Chiang Rai Province, Northern Thailand, that works to prevent and protect children and youth from being trafficked into exploitative labor conditions
- Durbar Mahila Samanwaya Committee, a collective of 65,000 sex workers in West Bengal
- Ethical Trade Co, a non-profit business based in Madison,Wisconsin, United States of America
- ECPAT, an international non-governmental organisation and network headquartered in Thailand which is designed to end the commercial sexual exploitation of children
- EVE, an advocacy group based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
- The Exodus Road, a non-profit coalition of organizations specialized in the intervention component of human trafficking, training and funding partnerships with local authorities to actively rescue people trapped in human trafficking in India, southeast Asia, and the United States
- Face to Face Bulgaria, an organization whose primary mission is to prevent cases of forced prostitution and human trafficking in Bulgaria
- Free the Slaves, dedicated to ending slavery worldwide
- Freeset, whose primary mission is to provide sustainable employment and economic empowerment to victims of sex trafficking in South Asia
- GABRIELA, a leftist Filipino organization that advocates for women’s issues
- Girls Educational and Mentoring Services, a nonprofit organization that provides services to commercially sexually exploited and domestically trafficked girls and young women, based in Harlem, New York
- Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women, a network of more than 100 non-governmental organisations from all regions of the world, who share a deep concern for the women, children and men whose human rights have been violated by the criminal practice of trafficking in persons
- Global Centurion, an anti-trafficking organization fighting human trafficking by focusing on demand, based in Washington, D.C., United States
- Hope for Justice, which identifies and rescues victims, advocates on their behalf, provides restorative care which rebuilds lives and trains frontline professionals to tackle slavery
- Ing Makababaying Aksyon, a feminist service institution that seeks to empower women and work for a society that genuinely recognises and upholds women’s rights
- International Justice Mission, a U.S.-based non-profit human rights organization that operates in countries all over the world to rescue victims of individual human rights abuse
- Love146, works to end child trafficking and exploitation through prevention education and survivor care.
- Maiti Nepal, a nonprofit organization in Nepal dedicated to helping victims of sex trafficking
- Mongolian Gender Equality Center, a non-governmental organization based in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
- NASHI, a Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada-based organisation that opposes human trafficking by raising awareness through education
- Office to Combat Trafficking in Persons, a government agency responsible for coordinating efforts to address human trafficking in British Columbia, Canada
- Operation Underground Railroad
- Physicians for Human Rights
- Polaris, a nonprofit, non-governmental organization that works to combat and prevent modern day slavery and human trafficking
- PREDA Foundation, a charitable organization that was founded in Olongapo City, Philippines, in 1974
- Prerana, a non-governmental organization (NGO) that works in the red-light districts of Mumbai, India, to protect children vulnerable to commercial sexual exploitation and trafficking. The organization runs three night care centers for children at risk, as well as shelter homes and a residential training center for girls rescued from the trafficking trade.
- Ratanak International, an organisation that rescues children from sexual slavery and then provides them with education, rehabilitation, and safety
- Reaching Out Romania, a non-governmental charitable organization in Romania that helps girls ages 13 to 22 exit the sex industry
- Redlight Children Campaign, a nonprofit organization created by New York lawyer and president of Priority Films Guy Jacobson and Israeli actress Adi Ezroni in 2002 to combat worldwide child sexual exploitation and human trafficking
- Renew Foundation, a Christian nonprofit non-government organization in the Philippines dedicated to empowering female survivors of human trafficking and prostitution in the Philippines
- Ricky Martin Foundation, an organization with the mission to advocate for the well-being of children around the world
- Ride for Refuge, a cycling event that raises awareness and funds for displaced persons, including human trafficking victims
- Run for Courage, a nonprofit organization that combats human trafficking
- Shared Hope International, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization which exists to rescue and restore women and children in crisis
- Slavery Footprint, a nonprofit organization based in Oakland, California, that works to end human trafficking and modern-day slavery
- Stop Child Trafficking Now, an organization founded by Lynette Lewis, an author and public speaker
- Stop the Traffik, a campaign coalition which aims to bring an end to human trafficking worldwide
- The RINJ Foundation, (RINJ or RINJ Women) is a Canadian incorporated global not-for-profit health care-related non-governmental organization women’s group listed with the United Nations as an NGO RINJ Women have investigated and prosecuted child slavery rings in Iraq, Ukraine, Philippines, Afghanistan and Syria. RINJ launches a global campaign titled: Don’t Buy A Kid! ~ End Child Sex Trade each year reminding potential purchasers of children that they are being watched and will eventually be caught. RINJ operates safe houses, Women’s Shelters and rape clinics around the world.
- Third World Movement Against the Exploitation of Women, an organization directed towards the liberation of women from all kinds of oppression and exploitation based on sex, race or class
- Thorn, aka Digital Defenders of Children; Ashton Kutcher’s organization driving tech innovation to fight child trafficking and the sexual exploitation of children
- Truckers Against Trafficking, a nonprofit organization that trains truck drivers to recognize and report instances of human trafficking
- Unlikely Heroes, a nonprofit that rescues and restores child victims of slavery worldwide and places them in their seven safe homes in the Philippines, Thailand, Mexico, and the United States
- U.S. Catholic Sisters Against Human Trafficking is a collaborative, faith-based national network that offers education, supports access to survivor services, and engages in advocacy to eradicate modern-day slavery.
- Veterans For Child Rescue (V4CR), V4CR is a nonprofit dedicated to exposing child trafficking in the USA, rescuing victims, & putting predators behind bars.
- Vital Voices, an international, nonprofit, non-governmental organization that works with women leaders in the areas of economic empowerment, women’s political participation, and human rights
- Voice of the Free, a nonprofit, non-stock and tax-exempt non-government organization in the Philippines established in 1991
- Warrior Bride Ministries is a non-profit organization offering free online and in-person biblical rehabilitation and restoration services to survivors of childhood exploitation including sex trafficking and ritual abuse.