Besides watching the steamy performance by Beyonce, which I could have done without, the Super Bowl was good entertainment from start to finish. The unexpected second intermission due to half the lights going out after a 109 yard run by the Ravens was another interesting surprise. Two half-times in a row. I do think that Beyonce could have done better without all the hair flinging, weird dance moves and smoke and fire. Her act must have tripped up the electric wires with all her sizzle. The sad part of the Super Bowl is that a LOT of the sex trafficking goes on during these big events, traffickers bring young girls in. Sick, sick, sick. Beyonce does not help in creating such an atmosphere that continues to victimize young women. Okay, enough about the Super Bowl in New Orleans and all those problems.
The following is something that is a little closer to home.
Collaboration to Fight Explosion of Human Trafficking along Minnesota Roads to North Dakota Oil Fields
North Dakota oil fields may be a new market for sale of humans for sex
and labor. Victims are driven along I-90 and then north on roads which
are normally deserted. Trafficked victims, both international and
domestic, are being transported for labor and sex trafficking in the
North Dakota oil fields.
In response to these crimes against victims of human trafficking, a
collaboration of organizations, including law enforcement, sexual and
domestic assault advocates, educators, shelters, and attorneys plan to
travel to a conference in San Francisco to receive training in
collaborative efforts. Attendees will then train other collaborators.
Collaboration members will work together to provide safety and victim
centered services for sex and labor trafficked victims. Those victims
will be empowered to testify against traffickers to interdict the flow
of sex and labor trafficked victims along Minnesota corridors and the
stem the tide of victims being transported north to North Dakota oil
Recently, police stopped a speeding vehicle along I-90 in Minnesota.
The police saw a little girl in the back seat of the car huddled as far
away from the driver as possible. Police questioned the driver who did
not speak the language of the girl. The police determined that the
driver did not know enough about the little girl to be transporting
Aliandra (pseudonym) from central america, had only a bottle of water
and the ragged clothes on her back. She was shivering both from fear of
the driver and the cold. She looked to be about 12 years old.
The driver of the car told the police that two men were to meet him at
the next truck stop to pick up the girl and that they should know more
about the kid. The police said, “Let’s go.”
When the police met the two men at the truck stop, they determined that
neither one of the men spoke the girl’s language. The two men could not
tell the police enough about the child to be in control of her.
The child was brought to a temporary foster home placement. The foster
mother’s heart broke when the child whimpered and clung to her.
The enlightened county attorney and judges appointed a guardian ad
litem and social worker who contacted Civil Society, a not for profit
organization providing legal and case management services for human
trafficking victims. They contacted Civil Society by calling the
Minnesota Human Trafficking Crisis and Tip Line at 1-888-772-3324.
Civil Society was able to begin to work with the guardian ad litem and
social worker who had never encountered a child in these circumstances
before. They were anxious that the child would be deported.
Authorities found that the child had been transported and marched to
the U.S. from central america across horribly rough terrain at night,
with little or no food and water. They also suspect that the child had
been abused along the road trip to Minnesota. All those dealing with
the child realized that she would probably be trafficked again and be
forced to make the same dangerous trek again if she were deported.
Law enforcement has noted increased transportation of this same ethnic
group along I-90 and then north toward North Dakota in the last year.
There is help under the Trafficking Victim Protection Act for this
child. The federal government also provides psychological counseling
for victims by culturally appropriate experts, knowledgeable in the
human trafficking of children.
The girl is from an ethnic group which has been designated one of the
most vulnerable to trafficking by the Trafficking in Persons Report,
the group’s abject poverty, isolation (they don’t even speak Spanish)
and because they have a cultural practice of going into trance-like
states. Thus, when they are abused, they may dissociate rather than
recognize the abuse.
Poor villagers in central america are threatened that they be killed or
will lose their small plots of land if they don’t send their daughters
to work. Many of them don’t realize or are fooled into believing that
their daughters will be working in the fields in the United States like
they work in the fields at home. However, children who are labored
trafficked are usually also sex trafficked. When villagers receive
money from the sex or labor trafficking of their daughters, they often
use it to send their younger children to the U.S. to gain more money
for the family.
1st National Bank Building
332 Minnesota Street
St. Paul, MN 55101