Lesson 10 – March 30 th
Human trafficking is linked to other issues we have discussed such as immigration, refugee
policy, human smuggling, and human rights. Canada can be a source, destination, transit country,
or all three. We often think that human trafficking is the result of people being brought into
Canada from other countries, but trafficked people are often Canadians, and others are brought in
from other countries to go to the United States. It raises boarder security in Canada and US
Part 1: The Nature of Human Trafficking
Human trafficking is linked to transnational organized crime, and that facilitates the trade and
traffic in humans. It is also linked to global inequality and the trafficking of people is related to
the quest to improve their lives. Globalization and technology allows us to move people around
more and track people, it has changed the nature of human trafficking.
Human smuggling is about the smuggling of people who want to get someone where, “business
transaction that ends upon arrival.” It can be defined as helping people cross boarders to places
where they want to go.
Trafficking implies ongoing control and exploitation of people being smuggled (modern day
slavery). Trafficking requires the recruiting and transporting of people, the means by which this
is done can be through threat and coercion, abduction, deception, abuse of power, payments, etc.
Why is this done? To exploit people, make money, prostitution, slavery, forced labour, organ
Trafficking can be considered modern slavery. We often think of slave trade in the western
culture of something in the past where slaves were trafficked from Africa to the States as
something we evolved from. Tens of millions of people are still affected from modern slavery.
Part 2: Human Trafficking in Canada
Human trafficking in Canada is linked to sexual exploitation. Forced labour is the most dominant
sector globally, but in Canada its the prostitution, brothels, strip clubs and so forth. In terms of
global trade and traffic of people, it often goes on national and ethnic lines. Victims of human
trafficking are made to be dependent and their only way out is to sell their body to survive and
escape. They are given to a fake employment agency, their passport is taken away, and no money
and they are forced with drug addictions. Often they believe their safety of their family members
are put in jeopardy or their sex work will be revealed to their family.
New Canadians and Aboriginal peoples, as well as rural people, are lured into a lifestyle that
looks promising and becomes one where they are exploited and working against their will.
Part 3: Combatting Human Trafficking in Canada
Canada’s desire to have temporary foreign workers who could work at lower rates than Canadian
workers, but we we’re not always aware of their working conditions. Human smuggling now falls under the reformed immigration act. There are more powers for the minister of immigration
to designate people as smugglers and imposing mandatory minimum sentences on human
smugglers, and there are measures to discourage irregular arrivals.