Torture in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Australia]  [other countries]
 

Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery

In the early years of the 21st Century                                                  gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Australia.htm

Commonwealth of Australia

Australia has an enviable, strong economy with a per capita GDP on par with the four dominant West European economies. Emphasis on reforms, low inflation, a housing market boom, and growing ties with China have been key factors over the course of the economy's 17 solid years of expansion. Robust business and consumer confidence and high export prices for raw materials and agricultural products fueled the economy in recent years, particularly in mining states.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Description: Description: Australia

Australia is a destination country for women from Southeast Asia, South Korea, Taiwan, the People’s Republic of China (PRC), and reportedly Eastern Europe trafficked for the purpose of commercial sexual exploitation. Some men and women from several Pacific islands, India, the PRC, South Korea, the Philippines, and Ireland are fraudulently recruited to work temporarily in Australia, but subsequently are subjected to conditions of forced labor, including confiscation of travel documents, confinement, and threats of serious harm. Some indigenous teenage girls are subjected to forced prostitution at rural truck stops.   - U.S. State Dept Trafficking in Persons Report, June, 2009   [full country report]

 

 

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Australia.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.

*** FEATURED ARTICLE ***

Paying for Servitude: Trafficking in Women for Prostitution in Australia

Kathleen Maltzahn, 2004 International Women’s Day Pamela Denoon Lecture, March 4, 2004

cpcabrisbane.org/Kasama/2004/V18n1/Servitude.htm

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Traffickers routinely respond to women’s initial complaints, including their requests to return home, with sexual, physical and psychological violence. Threats can include something as subtle – I use the term advisedly – as threatening to send a woman’s child a pornographic picture of her. As with women deceived about doing prostitution, this violence aims to teach women that they have no other option, cannot access help and cannot escape. One of the great skills of traffickers is their ability to move beyond simple brute force. In this way, women can be effectively imprisoned with well-applied and strategic physical violence, that may appear minimal to outsiders, cemented by devastating psychological violence. Traffickers engage with women’s psychology. They learn what women value, and work to their strengths and weaknesses. In this, I suspect we can learn something from them. I am sure if government agencies spent more time trying to understand how trafficked women see things, rather than seeing them as problems that don’t understand how we work, we would have more success in challenging trafficking.

 

*** ARCHIVES ***

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2005/61601.htm

[accessed 19 January 2011]

TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS – Some women, primarily from China and Southeast Asia, were brought into the country for the purpose of prostitution, sometimes entering with fraudulently obtained tourist or student visas. Many of these women traveled to the country voluntarily to work in both legal and illegal brothels, but some reportedly were deceived or coerced into debt bondage or sexual servitude. Authorities believed that sex trafficking networks were composed primarily of individual operators or small crime groups that often relied on larger organized crime groups to procure fraudulent documentation for the trafficked women. In June 2004 a federal parliamentary committee issued a report on its yearlong inquiry into the national criminal intelligence agency's response to sex trafficking and the adequacy of federal anti-trafficking laws.

In response to the report's recommendations, in June the government expanded existing anti-trafficking laws to include new offenses for debt bondage, child trafficking, and domestic trafficking, with penalties of up to 25 years in prison, and in September ratified the UN Trafficking Protocol.

Concluding Observations of the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, September 30, 2005

www1.umn.edu/humanrts/crc/australia2005.html

[accessed 19 January 2011]

[67] While the Committee welcomes some positive developments in the context of prevention of trafficking and forced prostitution, such as the adoption of the National Plan of Action to Eradicate Trafficking in Persons of October 2003 and the changes to the Criminal Code in 2005 whereby, inter alia, trafficking in persons and child pornography have been criminalized, the Committee is concerned that Australia continues to be a destination country for trafficked women and girls in the sex industry.

[69] The State party is also encouraged to become a party to the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, to which Australia is a party.

Testimony of Deng

US Department of State

actioncenter.polarisproject.org/the-frontlines/survivor-testimonies/38-testimonies/60-testimony-of-den

[access date unavailable]

Deng, in her late 20's, was recruited in her native Thailand to travel voluntarily to Australia where she was told she could make lots of money as a prostitute. Upon arrival in Australia, however, she was met by traffickers who took away her passport and locked her in a house.

UQ study looks at foreign sex worker exploitation and human trafficking

University of Queensland UQ News, September 22, 2008

www.uq.edu.au/news/?article=16004

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Australia and Canada's records in combating human trafficking were among the worst in the developed world, according to a University of Queensland researcher.  Dr Andreas Schloenhardt, a senior lecturer in UQ's TC Beirne School of Law said trafficking in persons remained a phenomenon not well understood and poorly researched.  "This is despite greater public awareness and acknowledgement of the problem by government agencies," he said.  "Strategic policies, concerted government action, along with prosecutions and convictions of traffickers are only slowly forthcoming and the support available to victims of trafficking is only marginally developed."

One of the major obstacles to government policy making, program development by non-governmental organisations, and public awareness about the exploitation of foreign workers and the trafficking in persons was the lack of any reliable and comprehensive account of the nature and extent of this problem, he said.  Anecdotal evidence and statistical estimates without a sufficient evidentiary basis were the only sources of information currently available about Australia and Canada's involvement in trafficking in persons.  This was in contrast to other countries where comprehensive accounts of human trafficking were published annually by government agencies.

All-out bid to emancipate nation's sex slaves

Matthew Benns and Heath Gilmore, Sidney Morning Herald, July 6, 2008

www.smh.com.au/news/national/allout-bid-to-emancipate-nations-sex-slaves/2008/07/05/1214951110445.html

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Authorities have identified more than 100 women as sex slaves, imported into Australia to work as prostitutes, since 2004. They often have their passports seized by brothel owners and must work to pay off so-called "debts", as high as $45,000, for the opportunity to work in Australia.

The number of sex slaves in Sydney looking for help prompted the Salvation Army to open a 10-bed refuge for illegally trafficked sex workers.

Salvos issue slavery call-to-arms

ABC News, Apr 15, 2008

www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/04/15/2217524.htm?section=australia

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Salvos say about 3,000 trafficked workers may be found on Australian farms or in mines, factories, restaurants and private homes.  Spokesman Rick Hoffman says he knows of Indonesian or Burmese children as young as 12 working in Brisbane.

Govt taking poor approach to human trafficking: report

ABC News, Oct 2, 2007

www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2007/10/02/2048326.htm?section=justin

[accessed 19 January 2011]

A new report by an international alliance of non-government organisations suggests Australia's anti-people trafficking measures should be reviewed.  The Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women argues Australia puts too much emphasis on law enforcement instead of protecting victims.  In a report to be released today, the organisation also raises concerns temporary skilled work visas under the 457 visa scheme could expose migrant workers to exploitation.  Human rights lawyer Eleanor Taylor-Nicholson from the Alliance says there is a focus on the sex trade in Australia at the expense of other workers.

Falling Short of the Mark: An International Study on the Treatment of Human Trafficking Victims [PDF]

The Future Group, March 2006

www.oas.org/atip/canada/Fallingshortofthemark.pdf

[accessed 19 January 2011]

AUSTRALIA - Australia is complying with its international obligations under the Trafficking Protocol related to the protection of victims of human trafficking. Since 2003, it has implemented a phased system of protection for victims of human trafficking with enhanced residency status being tied to enhanced support services, which are government funded. Specialized investigative teams have facilitated the unique needs of trafficking victims being promptly addressed.

RESIDENCE - The new Australian approach to residence of trafficking victims is three-phased. First, the “Bridging Visa F” lasts for 30 days while an investigation into trafficking claims are being made. Secondly, if the victim agrees to assist with the investigation, they are eligible for a “Criminal Justice Stay Visa” (“CJS Visa”) which is valid for the duration of criminal proceedings in the case they are assisting with. Thereafter, victims may apply for a “Witness Protection (Trafficking) Visa” enabling them to remain in Australia on a temporary or permanent basis, depending on individual circumstances.

Ellison rejects estimate of sex slave numbers

Samantha Hawley, ABC NewsOnLine, August 17, 2005

www.abc.net.au/news/2005-08-17/ellison-rejects-estimate-of-sex-slave-numbers/2082604

[accessed 19 January 2011]

"I believe that the number of people who have been deceptively recruited into the industry in Australia is very low and I think we're talking about quite a small number," Ms Fawkes said.

Australia acts on forced marriage

Phil Mercer, BBC News, Sydney, 3 August 2005

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/4740871.stm

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Australia has brought in tough laws that could see people who traffic young girls overseas for forced marriages jailed for up to 25 years.  The Justice Minister, Chris Ellison, said the practice was tantamount to sexual trafficking and would be an offence under the new legislation.

Sex trafficking under the microscope

Natalie O'Brien, The Sun-Herald, July 10, 2005

www.smh.com.au/news/national/sex-trafficking-goes-under-the-microscope/2005/07/09/1120704596892.html

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Mr Milroy said the syndicates might now be shifting their operations to other crimes. "I think a lot of the attention ... has raised the level of awareness in the community," he said.  "Those who are involved and are affected by this, as all criminal groups are when you pay them attention, step back and realize this is too difficult and that there are easier ways of making money."

Trafficked Women 'Being Raped, Starved'

The Sydney Morning Herald, July 6, 2005

www.smh.com.au/news/National/Trafficked-women-being-raped-starved/2005/07/06/1120329497809.html

[accessed 19 January 2011]

There are at least 1,000 adult women in Australia in any one year who have been brought here to work as prostitutes and most have their passports removed and are subjected to violence and rape to "break them in".

Children 'Handed Over To Sex Ring'

Jeremy Roberts, The Australian, 24-5-2005

www.mako.org.au/ausnews391.html

[accessed 19 January 2011]

"The picture is painted of young girls and boys who were frightened, unable to protect themselves and make disclosure and who were abandoned by their carers [care givers]," says the report by Ted Mullighan, the commissioner of the inquiry into the sex abuse of state wards.  The report finds that young boys from St Joseph's Catholic Orphanage and Brookway Park Boys Reformatory were sexually abused at the homes of adults who had permission to take boys on day outings or to stay away at weekends, the report says.

Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 1   Civil Liberties: 1   Status: Free

2009 Edition

www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/2009/australia

[accessed 26 June 2012]

Human Rights Overview

Human Rights Watch

www.hrw.org/asia/australia

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Two face sex slavery charges

Australian Federal Police AFP, Melbourne, Australia, 2004-12-03

www.news24.com/World/News/Two-face-sex-slavery-charges-20041203

[accessed 19 January 2011]

AFP agent Josephine Accetta said Ho and another suspect, Hoting Yeung, ran two Melbourne brothels where foreign women were forced to work as prostitutes.  Hoo helped by keeping three Thai women locked in a house and driving them to and from the brothels, Accetta told the court.  The women were among a group of at least seven who told police they were slaves.

Accetta said a year-long investigation had produced a "very strong case" including telephone intercept evidence.  Ho was recorded trying to sell a 21-year-old woman for A$21 000 (about R95 000) after flying to Sydney with Yeung in August this year. Yeung fled overseas on November 4 and was not expected to return, Accetta said.

Paying for Servitude: Trafficking in Women for Prostitution in Australia

Kathleen Maltzahn, 2004 International Women’s Day Pamela Denoon Lecture, March 4, 2004

cpcabrisbane.org/Kasama/2004/V18n1/Servitude.htm

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Traffickers routinely respond to women’s initial complaints, including their requests to return home, with sexual, physical and psychological violence. Threats can include something as subtle – I use the term advisedly – as threatening to send a woman’s child a pornographic picture of her. As with women deceived about doing prostitution, this violence aims to teach women that they have no other option, cannot access help and cannot escape. One of the great skills of traffickers is their ability to move beyond simple brute force. In this way, women can be effectively imprisoned with well-applied and strategic physical violence, that may appear minimal to outsiders, cemented by devastating psychological violence. Traffickers engage with women’s psychology. They learn what women value, and work to their strengths and weaknesses. In this, I suspect we can learn something from them. I am sure if government agencies spent more time trying to understand how trafficked women see things, rather than seeing them as problems that don’t understand how we work, we would have more success in challenging trafficking.

Australia to set trafficking rules

Reuters , Canberra, Jun 18, 2004

www.taipeitimes.com/News/world/archives/2004/06/18/2003175534

[accessed 19 January 2011]

The sex slavery trade in Australia hit the spotlight last year with an inquest into the death of a 27-year-old Thai woman, Puongtong Simaplee, who choked to death on her vomit in a Sydney detention center after 15 years as a prostitute in Australia.

Project Respect, a group that represents women brought to Australia as sex slaves, believes there could be up to 1,000 such women in the country at any one time.

10 reasons for NOT legalizing prostitution

Janice G. Raymond, Coalition Against Trafficking in Women International (CATW), March 25, 2003

www.prostitutionresearch.com/10%20reasons%20for%20not%20legalizing%20prostitution.pdf

[accessed 23 July 2013]

2. LEGALIZATION/DECRIMINALIZATION OF PROSTITUTION AND THE SEX INDUSTRY PROMOTES SEX TRAFFICKING - The link between legalization of prostitution and trafficking in Australia was recognized in the U.S. State Department’s 1999 Country Report on Human Rights Practices, released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. In the country report on Australia, it was noted that in the State of Victoria which legalized prostitution in the 1980s, “Trafficking in East Asian women for the sex trade is a growing problem” in Australia…lax laws including legalized prostitution in parts of the country make [anti-trafficking] enforcement difficult at the working level.”

Statement by the HON Mrs Christine Gallus MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, to the Commission on Human Rights, High Level Segment, United Nations, Geneva, 16 March 2004

Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General, Geneva, Switzerland, 16 March 2004

At one time this article had been archived and may possibly still be accessible [here]

[accessed 3 September 2011]

We are also tackling issues such as trafficking in persons which are a grave threat to the health and safety of women and children throughout the Asia Pacific.  The Australian Government recently strengthened its efforts to combat people trafficking through coordinated activities within Australia and in the region.  Australia has been strongly involved in the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons, and Related Transnational Crime.

In October 2003, the Government pledged more than $20 million over four years to combat trafficking.  We have also committed more than $14 million to a number of projects in Cambodia, southwest China, Laos, Burma, Thailand and Vietnam.  These projects aim to reduce people trafficking and improve protection, recovery and reintegration of trafficked women and children.

Last week, on International Women’s Day, I announced Government funding of $200,000 to help countries in the Sub-Continent to abolish sex slavery.  And, I am pleased to advise that Australiawill soon ratify the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children.

People smuggling and trafficking in persons

Australian Government, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade - Illegal Immigration

www.dfat.gov.au/illegal_immigration/

[accessed 19 January 2011]

PEOPLE SMUGGLING - Australia, along with the United States, New Zealand and Japan, funds the Bali Process on People Smuggling, Trafficking in Persons and Related Transnational Crime (the Bali Process).  The Bali Process is a regional, multilateral process designed to boost bilateral and regional cooperative efforts against people smuggling and trafficking through technical workshops and increased cooperation between interested countries, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Australia Tips in with Bt250m to Help with People Trafficking in ASEAN

Jim Pollard, The Nation, 18 December 2003

yaleglobal.yale.edu/content/australia-tips-bt250m-help-people-trafficking-asean-0

[accessed 19 January 2011]

Thai and Australian government officials yesterday discussed new moves to counter the trafficking of "sex slaves" and other people Down Under and within the region.  Thailand is one of four Asean nations Australia will help to fight human trafficking, along with Burma, Laos and Cambodia. Canberra is funding an 8.5-million Australian dollar (Bt250 million) project to provide a more effective and coordinated approach by governments in Southeast Asia to prevent trafficking.

Australia Unveils Initiative to Stop Human Trafficking

Christine Inglis, Migration Information Source, November 2003

www.migrationinformation.org/Feature/display.cfm?id=178

[accessed 19 January 2011]

As part of the package, a new 23-member Australian Federal Police team will be established to investigate trafficking, and a senior migration officer will be appointed to Thailand, a major source of women trafficked into Australia. Support services will be developed for victims of trafficking, including those who will be kept in detention and for those returned to source countries in Southeast Asia.

One factor underlying the attention to human trafficking is undoubtedly the media spotlight on the detention of female trafficking victims, including the death at the Villawood Immigration Detention Center of a young woman who had allegedly been brought to Australia as a 12-year-old for commercial sex work. Lobbying by women's groups outraged by this and other incidents played a key role in putting the issue on the political agenda.

Trafficking sex

Jennifer Burn, University of Technology Sydney UTS:Newsroom, 02 Jun 2005

newsroom.uts.edu.au.tmp.anchor.net.au/news/2005/06/trafficking-sex

[accessed 19 January 2011]

This month I heard about Mary who is currently detained in the Villawood Immigration Detention Centre. Mary arrived in Australia on a student visa in 1999. She had been promised a restaurant job and a chance to study. When she arrived her new 'boss' took her to a house in Cabramatta, a makeshift prison tucked away in suburbia. He then told her that she owed him money for her visa and her air ticket. To pay back this debt Mary was forced to sleep with 500 men before eventually escaping from the brothel with the help of a client.

Trafficking and the Sex Industry: from Impunity to Protection

Dr Kerry Carrington, Social Policy Group & Jane Hearn, Law and Bills Digest Group, Information And Research Services, Current Issues Brief No. 28 2002–03, 13 May 2003

Click [here] to access the article.  Its URL is not displayed because of its length

[accessed 23 July 2013]

This brief provides an overview of the trafficking of women and children into the Australian sex industry in the context of the global trade in people trafficking. It examines why there have been no prosecutions of traffickers under existing Commonwealth laws. It explains how Australia's emphasis on border control is working against the prosecution of traffickers and the human rights of trafficking victims and explains how existing Australian policy and law will need to change to meet the new internationally agreed standards to punish traffickers and support victims under the UN Trafficking Protocol.

Jammed: Trafficked Women in Australia

Extracts from a paper based on the presentation given by Georgina Costello, Refugee Team, Amnesty International,

STOP THE TRAFFIC SYMPOSIUM, RMIT, Melbourne, Australia — 25 February 2002

KASAMA Vol. 16 No. 2 / April–May–June 2002 / Solidarity Philippines Australia Network

cpcabrisbane.org/Kasama/2002/V16n2/Jammed.htm

[accessed 19 January 2011]

In September 2001, a young Vietnamese woman died in Villawood Immigration Detention Centre in Sydney. She is believed to have been brought to Australia when she was 12 years old on a family reunion migration application which was possibly fraudulent. It is understood that upon arrival in Australia she was placed in a brothel and that she worked continuously as a prostitute until her incarceration in Villawood after authorities detected her as an "illegal immigrant". There was evidence of drug use on her body, with injection scars on both arms. She was locked in solitary confinement in Villawood. Her dead body was found lying face down in a pool of vomit.

In January 2002, there was a second death of a trafficked Vietnamese woman in Villawood. This woman had made at least one previous suicide attempt. It is believed that she died in hospital from injuries caused when she jumped out of a window from the first floor of the women’s dormitory. To date, there has been no coronial inquest into the deaths.

All material used herein reproduced under the fair use exception of 17 USC § 107 for noncommercial, nonprofit, and educational use.  PLEASE RESPECT COPYRIGHTS OF COMPONENT ARTICLES.  Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Human Trafficking & Modern-day Slavery - Australia", http://gvnet.com/humantrafficking/Australia.htm, [accessed <date>]

 

 
Torture in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Australia]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Australia]  [other countries]