Conclusion of Research Paper – Human Trafficking!

5th Jan 2011 

I finally finished my research paper on Human Trafficking on 30th Dec 2010. I wanted it finished in time for the beginning of the new year and yay I did it.  12,271 words (not including the acknowledgments or methodology of course).

I’m saying I have finished it but of course it still has to be checked by Richard and get the thumbs up from him.

I have one or two appendices to print out still and transfer a audio interview to cd disk, but the main writing is complete.

Thought I’d post the conclusion here, so well,… here it is:


Human Trafficking – the trade in human lives – is a vile and heinous crime, it is the scourge of the mankind, and a gross abuse of human rights.

It should shame us all as human beings.

What is new and shocking, is the volume of trafficking taking place, and how little we know about it. How can a problem, so monstrous and so widespread continue with the majority of society being unaware of its existence?

But, are we really so blind, or do we consciously blinker our vision, turning away and denying this crime exists because it is so alien to us that we lack empathy for the victims?

Many campaigners believe the legalisation of prostitution can help combat the high numbers of victims enslaved in the world of sex trafficking, but as long as there is a demand, supplies will be provided. It is an underworld, a taboo subject that society keeps hidden and while this is so, pressure is not put on governments and authorities to help. Perhaps the legalization of prostitution and registering brothels will help, but what about the other sectors of the sex industry? Are we ready as a society to accept the existence of them and have them legalised? Until we are, the workers of this industry will be kept out of sight and out of mind.

The general public are becoming more aware of the sector of trafficking that is known as forced, slave and child labour, what with ‘Fair Trade’ products being produced so that consumers know that workers are being paid fairly, but It is still very difficult for buyers to always know exactly where goods are being produced, the age and well being of the workers, and if they are being produced in safe and respectful environments.

High street retailers and well-known companies use contractors and sub-contractors to produce their goods, denying the accusations that they somehow must be aware of the working conditions of the people who produce their merchandise.

When it comes to consumerism, is the reality of the true price of cheap fashion and goods our very own (UK) sweatshops and is it time for the (UK) government to make retailers legally responsible for the whole of the supply chain?

In the past two years, various worldwide organisations have put pressure on Governments to make changes to laws concerning the rights of victims of human trafficking and new government agencies have been set up to train staff, educate the public and help and support victims of trafficking crimes. Sadly, though, because of cut backs to funding, the system is constantly failing many victims and allowing the perpetrators to continue.

The UK may also have to reconsider it’s status as an ‘island’ separate from the rest of the EU. If we are to be part of the UN’s fight against human trafficking, then all countries must work fully together. There should be no boundaries and borders where humanity is concerned.

With Reference to the Future:

While there are many worthwhile agencies and organisations around who do invaluable work spreading the word and helping victims of Human trafficking, the continued governments cuts to funding force these charitable organisations to appeal to the general public for help with financial aide. This subsequently causes society to become immune to such appeals and perhaps this is partly the reason for the public’s lack of awareness of Human Trafficking.

The last few years has brought new laws and acts into force to help combat human trafficking and protect victims, but to effectively combat the problem it is necessary for world leaders and organisations to address the pre-trafficking conditions, such as the poor Infrastructure and economic opportunities that create vulnerability. In order for this to happen, pressure must be put on them to do so.

Perhaps the way forward is to look towards using means which will grab the public attention, such means could involve using well known artists and celebrities to help spread the world, similar to the Band/Live Aid projects in the 1980’s.

Current bands such as ‘MUSE’, ‘Radiohead’ and ‘The Killers’ are already involved with projects in conjunction with ‘MTV Exit’ and ‘Anti Slavery international’, creating music and video which tackles the subject of Human Slavery.

The Helen Bamber Foundation, along with well-known British artists, including ‘Anish Kapoor’ and ‘Emma Thompson’, recently created an international art installation titled ‘The Journey’, as part of a campaign against sex trafficking.

Projects such as these, where employing the use of contemporary artists to bring the attention of taboo subjects to the forefront of society, helps put pressure on governments to instill the better infrastructures and economic opportunities needed, along with making changes to laws, enabling the prosecution of perpetrators and provision of aide to victims.

Human Trafficking touches every country and countless industries worldwide, and while there are many individuals and organisations working globally to combat this problem, it may take time before it is fully realised just how huge this issue is.

maggie laidlaw

Dec 2010


About bad3maggie

3rd year art & design student. I would describe myself as a materials based installation artist working with text, through which I reflect, observe and comment on self as well as social and environmental issues. This blog is a record of my final year studying for my BA in art & design at Forth Valley College, Falkirk.
This entry was posted in BADesign3 diary of progress. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Conclusion of Research Paper – Human Trafficking!

  1. sheena says:

    awesome i loved the words u have used to express the reserch

    • bad3maggie says:

      Thank You! I will upload a short documentary style video of the art installation I created from this research…
      Thanks for taking the time to read my piece… glad you enjoyed it… 🙂

  2. reena says:

    Congratulations. I am impress with the research topic done by you. I am currently working on a similiar topic but focusing more on child trafficking. I would be greatful if you advise me where can read the full work of your research. It would really help. Thank you.

    • bad3maggie says:

      Oh I’m really sorry… I’ve just discovered your comment. I do hope that you found relevant material for your research. I haven’t published my research – but if you are still interested I could email you a pdf – it’s pretty big though – about 12000 words.

  3. Helena says:

    Fantastic! My mother is a human trafficking survivor and just this piece was fascinating, to say the least. Keep up the good work with raising awareness!

    • bad3maggie says:

      Thank You Helena! I hope your mother is well… I wish her all the very best in the future. My eyes were really opened during my research of this vile and heinous crime. Hopefully my (art) work will help in raising awareness… and in turn help the public put pressures on governments to do more to help the victims and survivors of Human Trafficking, enslavement and exploitation.
      Thank You so much for reading my blog and for your comment.
      My very best wishes to you and your family
      (There is a short video documentary of my installation work here… Hopefully the video will give you a bit of an idea of the work I created and which was on view to the public for a week during June last year.

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