Watch the following segment from the “Lives for Sale: Human Trafficking” video.
Write 150 word about the video. I have copy and pasted the transcripts for the video. I do not need a tile page. I do need response to be cited and referenced. What was the video about? What did find that was interesting? Was anything from the video new inforamtion? What are your thoughts good and bag? Explain
The citation for video
Lives for sale: Human trafficking [Video file]. (2006). Retrieved April 16, 2017, from http://fod.infobase.com/PortalPlaylists.aspx?wID=18566&xtid=39008
The transcriot for the video
There will always be people who are willing to make a sacrifice to come to this country. Theybelieve in America.
There we met the coyote. I was so scared. Iremember that we were in front of the border, andhe pointed and said, that’s where you’ll cross, andyou’ll get to a place where they’ll be waiting foryou.
There’s a need for workers, and those are theplaces where traffickers are going to have theirpeople.
There’s certainly a demand for cheap labor,there’s a demand for commercial sex. It’s allabout money.
So then there’s a relationship between smugglingand trafficking that’s very closely tied toimmigration. Well, friends, they are merchandise,because they are just pounds of meat.
Each year, millions of Central Americans andMexicans attempt to enter the United Stateswithout documents, in search of the Americandream. The immigrants travel a dangerous roadthat threatens their lives at every turn. Why dopeople leave their home countries? What dangersdo they face along the way?
Many central Americans begin their journey bycrossing the Suchiate River from Guatemala intoMexico, bypassing immigration checkpoints.
It’s been really hard to make it this far. Hours bybus hours, walking. We’ve crossed rivers. Life inother countries, Honduras, El Salvador,Guatemala, is really hard. There’s so muchpoverty. Sometimes we don’t have anything toeat. Sometimes only a tortilla with salt.
In Honduras there’s hardly any work. You can’tfind any place to work. The United States is acountry that has a lot of work. It’s very difficult.From here we’re going to take the train.
Every day, hundreds of immigrants board freighttrains passing through Southern Mexico. Thetrains take them north, close to the US border.
I have nine grandchildren left with me, becausetheir father died and their mother abandonedthem. That’s why I thought about going to theUnited States. Because of our financial situation.But it’s not easy. It’s a very sad journey.
I have a one-year-old baby that I left behind inHonduras. It’s really hard to leave your familybehind. Your kids. I My idea is to go over there towork, and return to Honduras, our country.Everything in life involves a risk, right?
I know it’s dangerous. Sometimes the train cutsoff your legs or your arms, or it kills the peoplewho fall off. But you have to risk it because of theneed we have.
Of course I’m a little bit afraid, because you neverknow. It’s worse for a woman because there are somany people who try to harm you. We’re trustingin God that everything turns out all right. That weget there.
The 1,500 mile passage takes three days andnights. Some immigrants will fall from the trainand lose arms and legs, or they will die. Some willbe robbed or killed by gangs. Rape is so commonthat many women begin taking birth control pillsbefore they leave home.
We know that worldwide, there is talk of thefeminization of immigration. 54% of immigrantsthroughout the world are women. Since manyleave out of desperation, not to earn more moneybut really just to survive, women pay their waywith their bodies.
Along the immigration route are nightclubs andbrothels where desperate women earn moneywith their bodies to continue their journey.Trapped by slavery or diseases like AIDS, this is asfar as many of them get toward their dream.
The town of Altar is 30 miles from the Arizonaborder in the Sonora desert. For manyimmigrants, it’s the last stop in Mexico. They callfamily and friends waiting for them in the US, orwait for a coyote to take them across the border.Everyone here will walk through the desert. In2005, 460 immigrants died crossing the Sonoradesert.
Beginning with actions along the border, createdprimarily in California with Operation Guardian in1994 when they began to close the border, Sonoraand Arizona became a major crossing point. Altarbecame one of the places that the immigrantssaw as a better alternative.
But it’s a sad reality to confront the desert. Youdon’t know the consequences of being there,where there is no water. How to survive in themiddle of the desert. The desert has temperaturesof great extremes. During the hot season they canexceed 104 degrees Fahrenheit. In the winter,below freezing.
And this, for the immigrant, often means death.Arriving in the desert to find an immigrant houselike we have here, the center for the care ofmigrants and the needy. Well, this represents anoasis.
We tell them about the dangers that exist in thedesert, but many of them decide to cross thedesert anyway, because the reality of theirpoverty is so powerful.
How do we integrate within the free tradeagreement the freedom to work across borders,which would be an alternative where workers arenot ignored, but are in fact given opportunity? Wehave to find alternatives to achieve betterrelations between our countries, and reduce thistragic reality. For the desert has been convertedinto a veritable cemetery.
Rafael, Alberto, [? Palmacalos ?].
On this, our 208th vigil, we come to rememberespecially the lives of Virginia Elizabeth, [? Mahia, Mahia ?] and [? Otelio Juarezbaros ?]. [INAUDIBLE]was born on May 10, 1986. And she died July 5, 2005, 15 miles west of us. She was 19-years-old.
Virginia Elizabeth [? Mahia Mahia ?].
As our US government started building upborders, or walls and infrastructure in Douglas, itbegan pushing people further out away from thecity into more less populated areas. Then you haddangers of the desert, in the summertime ofdehydration. Some folks walking upwards of four and five days before finding transportation.
And so we began, in May of 2004, putting outwater with our minister, called Agua Para La Vidaon these main trails going into the US. And therewas also a pretty sharp decline in the number ofdehydration deaths. And we continue expandingthat ministry across the border with the help of agroup called CRREDA, which is a drugrehabilitation center.
And here we. CRREDA brings rehab patients to thedesert for a week at a time to look for people,immigrants, and help them.
There are people who didn’t think it was right givewater to the thirsty, and people who thought thatit was their fault if they died. They were, quote,illegal. As a community of faith, that’s ludicrousfor us to believe that anyone should die for tryingto find a better way of life for their families.
And so we began to talk with officials in Mexico,and got permission from ranchers on the Mexicanside of the border to put up water stations.
For 20 years I was a guide, or Pollero. Or whateveryou want to call it. I was in the desert takingpeople into the United States. My service, my jobwas to take them over. It was Immigration’s job tosend me back.
I was arrested at 49 times. I know the desert. Thestrategic places. Trails, the passes, and all theplaces where people can be.
[INAUDIBLE] warns the immigrants about the risksof crossing the desert, especially with children.But the immigrants still plan to cross the borderafter dark.
My name is Vincent Hampel. I’m a supervisoryborder patrol agent with the border patrol searchpatrol and rescue unit here in Tucson. The searchincludes the immigrants that put themselves inharm’s way when they go out there into the desertin over 100 degree temperatures.
Once they’re medically sound to travel, then wesend them back to the country they came from.Some people will go out during the day or night,and they’ll set up underneath trees because they know helicopters don’t see them as easily. So I’llshow you a couple of them out here.
On the trip north, there are about 48 miles at thispoint here, but that’s a straight line. So it’s quite abit more when you’re out walking through thedesert. I could find out through just looking at theground that someone sat the bottom here, orwhatever, but this tells me they stayed here for alittle while and left their stuff.
And maybe it got too heavy? I don’t know. Butthey abandoned a lot their stuff right out here.Yeah, that’s a new hat. That’s food, and that’swater. They had to have been picked up here.They’ll come out here with their cell phones, andthey’ll say, OK, we’re here. And then they’ll comeout.
I’ve got two hats I wear. I wear the lawenforcement hat, and then I wear the search andrescue hat. We get our calls from other aliens that have been arrested. And they’ll tell us, well, will you guys pick me up? There were four peopleabout a day’s walk back that way that, one ofthem looked really bad. Oh, yeah, he wasthrowing up. And that was yesterday.
Or we get calls from people who made it to the United States. And then they’ll call us up and say, oh, uh, our dude passed your [INAUDIBLE] this time, and on that trail back over there, there wasa dead guy.
I have a friend in the border patrol who one daysaid that the guy who lived next to him, hethought he was a coyote. And I asked him, I said,well, why do you think that? And he says, well,because every time I arrive home, the fella looksat me very angrily.
And I just kind of laughed, and off the cuff I said, you know, then he’s not a coyote. And I said,because you’re the coyote’s his best friend. Andhe looked, he says what do you mean by that? I said, well, the coyote exists because you exist.
As the border patrol is built up, it’s created thisneed of an industry. A coyote industry, a travelagent’s industry. What’s happening is they’re justcharging more money as they build up, and folkswho are suffering most are the migrants.
Well, friends, they are merchandise, because they are just pounds of meat. It’s a game of cat andmouse. You get past if you’re lucky.
500,000 undocumented immigrants successfullycross the border each year, but many could not beconsidered lucky. As many as 20,000 of them arevictims of human trafficking.
I was so scared. I remember that we were in frontof the border. There we met the coyote. And hepointed and said, that’s where you’ll cross, andyou’ll get to a place where they’ll be waiting foryou. Would you rather run for an hour, or walk allnight? And we said, well, run for an hour. He said,OK, but you’ve got to run as fast as you can.
We were running as fast as we could. We keptfalling. We jumped a fence, then another. Wejumped about three. I couldn’t feel my legs. I wasso tired. We were all tired. I said, I want to. Notanymore. I thought about my mother, mybrothers, and my sisters. And I felt bad. I said, Ihave to try for them.
A common scenario is a woman is forced tomigrate from a rural village in Mexico just to makea living to support her family and send moneyhome. And traffickers take advantage of that.
I was born in Mexico to a very poor family. Wewere five girls and three boys. We were alwaysvery poor. We didn’t have food, clothing. Nothing.When I was about eight years old, I began helpingmy mother sell things at the market, while myfather spent his time drinking.
I never really had a childhood because I wasalways working, helping my mother. When I was14, a man took me against my will. He’s the fatherof my daughter. I had no choice but to marry him,so I did. I never really loved him. He abandonedme, and I went back to live with my parents.
After that, I really wanted to work. To get ahead. Ialready had a child. I was 15. I started to work intortilla factories, in auto mechanic shops, sellingthings at the market. And it was still not enoughfor my family. I felt so desperate. I wanted to dosomething to get out of this misery.
A neighbor came looking for me. She offered me acompletely different life. She offered to send meto Los Angeles. I was going to have lots of moneyso I could provide for my brothers and sisters. Somy mother would have a better life.
I asked her, that all sounds beautiful, but inexchange for what? What will I have to do? I don’tspeak English, and I have no education. And shesaid, there is a lot of work there in factories, andyou can do it. And I said, my mother is not goingto like this. She said, well, you have to go. If youwant to help your mother, leave.
In spite of her doubts, Lucita accepts the offer of work in Los Angeles. She feels she has no otherchoice.
You have to remember that traffickers do havelongstanding, established relationships in thosecommunities. These are usually not strangers.
Victims of the trafficking phenomenon told usthat they were taken from their countries of originthrough deceit. The person offered to take themto the United States, where they were going to bepaid an incredibly high salary.
And they see paradise and salvation for theirfamilies. Better living conditions for their families.So it’s understandable that they agree to take thistrip.
They gave us money and told us we were to taketwo separate flights. From Zihuatanejo toHermosillo. From Hermosillo we took a bus toNogales.
The US State Department estimates that 80% ofinternational trafficking victims are women andgirls. The majority of them are trafficked forsexual exploitation.
There’s confusion between the concepts ofsmuggling immigrants and human trafficking, andit’s important to clear that up. Smugglingimmigrants, for example, is when I pay someoneto take me from one place to another, and itimplies crossing over a border. Trafficking inpersons has been going on within the smugglingof immigrants.
I pay to be taken over to the other side, and theydeceive me. And then from there they put meunder lock and key. In fact, I’m kidnapped, so I’lldo some other work that wasn’t what I asked for.So then there’s a relationship between smugglingand trafficking that’s very closely tied toimmigration.
We were running as fast as we could. There was awhite van there, and two women inside waitingfor us. They said, get in. That’s how they took usto Arizona.
Close to I-19 begins the transport of the illegals toTucson, or Mesa, or Phoenix, which is the firststop of their journey inside the United States.
In Phoenix we arrived at the coyote’s house. Herented a car and took us, I think to Los Angeles.Actually, I didn’t know where we went first.Another man was waiting for us who paid for ourtrip. The coyote told us that that man paid $1,000for each of us. Then he said, good luck.
They say the accomplice is as guilty as theperpetrator, so I don’t really want to know whathappens to people once they’re in the UnitedStates. What’s important is that they arrive ingood shape without problems, and that they payme. This might seem cold and businesslike, butit’s the truth.
The man locked himself in with us, and he said,do you know why you are here? I told him, well, towork. And he said, this is a brothel. To tell thetruth, I didn’t have any idea what a brothel was,and I said, what is a brothel? And he startedlaughing at me.
And one of the women told me, a brothel is wheremen come in and choose you, and you have tohave sex with them. And so I said, but I’ve neverdone this. Then they told me, well, you have to.
And if you don’t want to, if you try to escape,Immigration is going to address you and beat you.Up They’ll throw you in jail because you don’thave papers. I felt powerless. I was really afraid,and, well, I had to do it.
Victims of trafficking, you have human beings thatyou’re going to sell. They’re merchandise that willalways be there. You can resell them.
Lucita kept a daily record of the men who boughther for sex. Each drawing represents one of these men.
Human trafficking is essentially slavery, and it’swhen someone is forced against their will throughthe use of force, fraud, or coercion, and forcedinto an abusive situation.
They didn’t allow us to go outside. We could onlygo out if they were with us, watching over us. If weso much as tried to look at a street address,they’d say, what are you looking at? They tookaway our relatives, phone numbers, ID cards,everything.
They covered our windows with black clothes sowe couldn’t see outside. When we tried to peekoutside, they yelled at us. What do you want tosee outside? They said the police would see us.They really scared as. We were hardly allowed tobreath. We were always there. Trapped.
Smugglers and traffickers alike to use theinterstate highway system to transport theirhuman merchandise.
All along I-80, delivering the goods all the way toNew York, to Maine, Ohio, Tennessee, theCarolinas, Virginia or Florida.
I am from San Miguel Acatan in the state ofHuehuetenango in Guatemala. I lived with mymother and my stepfather. I never really knew myfather. My stepfather knew a bus driver namedFernando Pasqual. He was about 19-years-oldwhen I met him, I was about 10.
When I was about 11, my mother and step fathermade an arrangement with Fernando so that he could buy me. As far as I know, they sold it toFernando for 2,000 quetzals, which is what themoney is called in Guatemala. That’s about $260in the United States. My mother told me that Iwould have to be his mistress.
Fernando said that he would take me to theUnited States where his sister Matilda was living. Ihad to go with him. I was afraid he would hurt meif I did not do whatever he wanted. We tried fourtimes two cross the border. Two times MexicanImmigration authorities stopped us and sent us back to Guatemala. The other two times it wasUnited States Immigration. But the next time, wegot across from Mexico into Arizona.
Fernando paid a coyote with the money that hissister Matilda sent him. Fernando’s brother in law,Pasqual Sebastian, came to get us. He drove us towhere he lived in Cape Coral in Florida. AtPasqual’s house I had to do lots of chores, likecleaning the house and cooking.
He had a landscaping business. Some menworked for him. I had to wake up every day at 4:00 in the morning so that I could cook meals for theworkers. If I didn’t have the meals cooked on time,if I didn’t do the work around the house, Matildawould yell at me. Sometimes she would hit me.
I had to sleep with Fernando whenever hewanted. That was almost every day. If I didn’twant to, he would beat me. I was never allowed toleave the house alone. Every Sunday they wouldleave me alone at home when they went to theflea market, but before they left, they would putme in the bedroom and lock the door.
Also, they’d put a board across the window so that I couldn’t get out. Fernando told me that if Itried to leave, he would call the police. That thepolice would kill me.
If we think about our victims as vulnerable, theydon’t know the culture. They might not speak thelanguage. They don’t know their surroundings.The traffickers might tell them that if they police ever find them, that they’re going to be deported.
She was living there for six months. How is thispossible? And everyone in the house was outsideon the weekends having parties, drinking beer,playing music. Everyone outside. In six months, Inever saw this girl outside.
Fernando owed money to his brother, Mario. So topay off his debt, he told Mario that he could havesex with me. One day I was alone in the house,and Mario was there. After a while he came intomy bedroom, and he forced me to have sex with him. He raped me.
When I was about six months pregnant, I startedbleeding, and I had a lot of pain. I told Matilda andbegged her to help me, but she said I was faking.
Matilda asked me to please take her sister in lawto the hospital because she was having stomachcramps. I’m driving the car with the girl in theback seat, and two blocks away she startsscreaming. When I looked, she was in the birthingposition. So I hurried up to get to the hospital.
I was in so much pain by the time we got to thehospital, but I had a baby boy on October 22, 2003. 22nd
They did an emergency cesarean, and she had thebaby. He was premature, weighed two pounds.His lungs weren’t developed, he had heartproblems. Because I was a neighbor, I stayed alittle while, and left my phone number in casethey needed a translator or something. A favor asa neighbor.
Three days later, the hospital called Irma to takeEsperanza home. The baby remained at thehospital.
This girl started sobbing and sobbing. The onlything she said to me was, if my baby dies, it’sFernando’s fault. I asked her, Fernando who? Andshe said, the baby’s father. I asked her why shesaid if the baby died, it would be his fault. Shesaid, he beat me that day because I burned thetortillas.
It was the neighbor that actual reported thesexual slavery. The girl was young, she wasunsophisticated. She didn’t trust lawenforcement. She didn’t know who to report to.She didn’t have any hope or any alternatives. Andit took somebody to notice the situation for it toeven be discovered.
The abuse was reported to several governmentand private agencies. Irma and her husband wereawarded custody of Esperanza and her baby forthree months. But Fernando Pasqual and hissister Matilda continue to live across the street.
I go to the police, I make a complaint that anunderage girl was being abused. They assignsomeone to investigate. For months and monthsand months they were investigating. I’m callingthis agency, Children and Families, what’s goingon? Why isn’t this man in jail? What are you goingto do?
I have to get a restraining order because he’scalling and threatening her. He’s telling her, see?They’re not going to do anything, just like I toldyou. Fernando Pasqual threatened to killEsperanza and take her baby. A restraining orderwas filed against him, but the police did nothing.According to court officials, it fell through thecracks.
Esperanza was moved from one foster home toanother. Her baby stayed with Irma and herhusband.
It got to a point after going from agency to agencythat I felt so frustrated. I have three daughters ofmy own, and if something like this happened tothem, that’s what I couldn’t believe. And imagine,this is the United States.
18 months after the birth of her baby, Esperanzawas placed in a group home for teenage mothersand their babies. There were lots of reasons whythe truth would not have necessarily come out.This is so ugly. You want to believe it’s not thatbad. I attended the very first trafficking task forcemeeting, and I simply told them what I knew.
We immediately began looking into it because ofthe obvious factors that surrounded the case. I mean, this being a possible juvenile who has beenpossibly subjected to maybe commercial sex, lifeof servitude.
Janet Rincon called me at home. She asked meabout the girl. Right away I told her, excuse me,but if this is going to be more of the same, I’mtired of telling so many people this story, and in the end, nobody does anything about it.
She told me that she understood my position, andthat yes, she was going to do something for thiscase. And thank God, they did what theypromised.
This was very much an eye opener for me, I’msure for Janet as well, to find our first victim ofhuman trafficking in a middle classneighborhood. Not out in the poverty strickenstreets. Not a brothel. But in a middle classneighborhood less than three miles from my ownresidence.
We got the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the FBI.Immediately the partnership was created, andthey interviewed the girl. And within three weeks,the perpetrators were actually apprehended, and it hit the front page.
These individuals were immediately arrested, andthe victim is in the process now of being certifiedas a victim of severe human trafficking. She is theyoungest juvenile victim of human trafficking in the state of Florida thus far.
When we went back to the house to tell her thatthey were under arrest, the first thing that cameout of her mouth was, finally, someone believedmy story.
It was also a concerned neighbor who reportedthe brothel where Lucita was enslaved.
Eventually the police came. I was in my room, andI heard a lot of noise outside. Footsteps. I feltrelieved, but at the same time I was afraidbecause of what I’d been told.
That they would take me to jail, beat me up, and Iwould never get out because I didn’t have anymoney. So I hid in the closet, but later a very tallpolicemen came and put a gun to my head. Hesaid, get out of there.
Lucita and three other women were held at ahotel as material witnesses.
Then the people from CAST came, and they madeus feel secure. They said we shouldn’t worry, thatthey would take care of us. They told us, we’regoing to take you to a shelter where you can livejust like anyone else. They said that the policecouldn’t address us. We could hardly believe itbecause it was the reverse of everything we’dbeen told.
Like Lucita, many undocumented immigrantscome to the US at great risk. There are more thansix million of them in the labor force. Theyrepresent one in five roofers, one in fiveconstruction workers. One in four groundsmaintenance workers. One in five maids. One infive agricultural workers.
The United States will always to, to manycountries, to many less advantaged countries,that shining city on the hill.
I wanted to do something to get out of thatpoverty. I wanted to go to school, but I couldn’tbecause you need money for that. I couldn’t getahead because I could not get an education.
There will always be people who are willing tomake a sacrifice to come to this country. Theybelieve in that, and they end up here. It is ourresponsibility to do something about theirsituation.
There is a need for workers, and those are theplaces where traffickers are going to have theirpeople.
There’s sex trafficking, of course. There’s labortrafficking. We have a lot of cases that involvedomestic servitude. Part of it is demand. There’scertainly a demand for cheap labor. There’s ademand for commercial sex. I think beyond that,the root cause is really around trade policies, aswell as immigration policies.
Desperate poverty drives undocumentedimmigration and human trafficking. Alternativesbegin in places like Salvador Urbina, a small townin the coffee growing region of southern Mexico,with people like the Cifuentes family.
In 1986, the price of coffee fell. Up to then, theprice had been regulated by the Mexican CoffeeInstitute.
The growers sold their coffee beans to brokerswho represent multinational companies that setlower prices for higher yields.
The majority of people began leaving SalvadorUrbina, many of them for the United States.
Sons and husbands work and send money. Thereare single mothers, and they go. They leave theirchildren, work over there, and send the money tosupport the child.
Agua Prieta, Mexico is located across the borderfrom Douglas, Arizona. Eddie’s brother Danielimmigrated here in 1995 in search of work in thefactories along the border.
Coffee is an export product that ranks secondafter oil. How is it possible that the price has todrop? Why is that, when in the United States youpay up to $3 for a cup of coffee?
The idea came up of forming a cooperative. Acooperative of coffee growers, which they wouldhave the opportunity to sell or to export theircoffee directly.
As the farmers caught more of the vision, theysaid, well, let’s ask for a loan from Frontera Cristo.We have a microcredit ministry that providesloans to folks who want to start businesses as analternative to crossing the border. And so theyFrontera for a $20,000 loan in March of 2002.
And, well, we got 30 coffee producers togetherand organized. At the same meeting, we set theprice that we would like to get, which was $130per sack of coffee. A 100 pound sack like this one.
By the end of 2002, the cooperative was shippinggreen coffee beans to its roasting facility Agua Prieta. From there, the packages are shipped tothe United States. Just Coffee grosses close to$300,000 annually, and has expanded to two morecommunities.
At Just Coffee, we’re producing pure arabicacoffee of the highest quality. Absolutely organic.
They’ve taken the principles of fair trade, whichhas a minimum price that goes to the farmingcooperative. But instead of exporting their rawmaterials, Just Coffee has kept the job creation,and the value added in the profits in their owncommunity. And so it’s creating just a tremendousamount of hope, and it’s addressing root causesof immigration.
This is part of the vision of Just Coffee. To reducethe amount of immigration to the United States.
Among the members of the cooperative, I haven’theard of anyone who’s kid has left. The ones wholeft went before the cooperative was formed.
Yes, things are better than they were before,because Just Coffee has helped us.
A project in Guatemala helps kids stay in school.Most Guatemalans live on less than $2 a day.Children often work instead of going to school,especially girls. Lack of education means feweroptions to earn a living wage here, so many leadsto do manual labor in the US, easy prey for humantraffickers.
In Guatemala, the level of illiteracy is very high.And when we talk about women, 80% of them areilliterate. My name is Rosidalia Manuela RobleroSanchez. What I do to support my children is inthe afternoons, we go out to the street to sellthings. I don’t make much money because wedon’t sell very much.
But I tell the kids that we make enough to buyfood. During the school vacations, I go toTapachula, and I work in a house. Domestic work.
We’re getting by, despite the sacrifices. I don’thave running water yet. I don’t have the money,and so we can’t have lights. We can’t have water.As for the father of the kids, when I got sick, he leftand never came back.
Because there were seven of us sisters, my fatherdidn’t send us to school because, well, he didn’thave the money, and there was nowhere to get it.
In the past, young women couldn’t go to schoolbecause their mothers and fathers, especially inthis area, didn’t see the need for girls to study.This actually condemns young women to followthe cultural pattern, so every day they sink furtherinto poverty.
In San Jose, [INAUDIBLE], we’re supporting 380 young women, girls and boys, giving them aneconomic incentive to help them go to school.
Thank God the project helps me out with about$100 a year, at least for the uniforms.
Exel has done well, and now she’s in the fifthgrade. They’ve just had their exams, and bothpassed. They didn’t fail a single course. And [? Virhilio, ?] although he’s the little one, he goes toschool and he does well, even though it’spreschool. And next year, he’ll be in first grade.
And with this resource, at a given point with thelevel of education that we hope to achieve, wehope that people will stop immigrating to theUnited States. Actually, we see the United Statesas an opportunity.
Not only for the people who immigrate, but alsofor those of us who want to provide an alternativein this country. We all count on the resourcesprovided by the people there.
Through a Catholic church women’s program,Rosidalia is learning to read, write, and doarithmetic.
The literacy class has been a big help, becausebefore, I couldn’t figure the bill or make change. Ifeel proud of them, all of them, because I couldn’tdo what they’re doing.
And I tell them, this is wonderful, kids, because Iwas never able to pick up my backpack and sayI’m going to school, or talk about what grade Iwas in, because I wasn’t given the opportunity tostudy. So I tell them, study, so that’s somedaythey don’t have to leave Guatemala. So that theycan find good work here.
We have to look for favorable structural changes,so that people don’t find themselves forced toleave their country to search for a life with dignityin another country.
The consequences here of free trade agreements,merchandise moves freely, but people don’t.
The reality is that migration is continuing, and willcontinue. Any kind of immigration policy, I think,needs to take into account folks who are alreadyin the United States upholding our economythrough their labor, and to legalize their presence.
I don’t see it as an immigration problem I see it asa human problem. Once people are in our bordersand they are enslaved, it is our responsibility todo something about it.
Assistant chief US attorney Douglas Molloyprepared the case against Esperanza’s traffickers.
They’ve been charged with trafficking in humans,which is a slavery charge, as well as harboring andthe transport of illegal aliens. The charges carry amaximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment. Ithink that her experience is going to be verydifficult for an American jury to understand howthat could happen in this day and age. But it did.
And I think that’s going to be one of the mostcompelling things at trial. One of the first things Ihave to do with the jury is to convince them thatslavery even exists literally in their backyard.
Esperanza did not testify at the trial. She will stayin the US with a T-Via. Her trafficker will bedeported after serving a 10 year sentence.
One of the best things about the TraffickingVictims Protection Act is that the victims canapply for a T-Visa, which means temporary statusso that they can apply for permanent status in the United States. They don’t necessarily have totestify, but they do have to assist in theprosecution.
Many victims don’t want to participate in theinvestigations because they fear for their lives,because traffickers have told them that if they dohelp in the investigation in any way, that they willkill them.
It’s really helped for the victim to have CAST as anadvocate in order to know and understand theirrights and what that means here in the US. Andalso so that they’re provided the right kind ofsupport in order to be an effective witness for lawenforcement.
Thank God they arrested that man. They weregoing to have a trial, but as luck would have it, heplead guilty and we didn’t have to see his face.Later there was a trial against his assistant, and Itestified at that trial.
That was really, really hard. It was the first time I’dever been in court, but people from CAST werethere to support me. They kept saying, it’s allright, you can do it. You’re strong. They alwaysstood by me, and that’s why I’ve been able to goon with my life.
When they first enter our program at CAST, theylack self esteem, they certainly don’t have thephysical or emotional, and sometimes thepsychological resources to function on a day today level.
And by working through the program, by gettingintensive case management, by getting thevocational skills that they need, by getting thelegal assistance that they need in order to getemployment authorization, they go through thisprocess of recovery. And they really go from beingvictim to survivor.
For my birthday they took me out to dinner. Thatwas the first time anyone ever remembered mybirthday. I’m work in a hotel now. It’s been almosta year. In the evenings I go to school to learnEnglish. I’m here. At least I’ve tried to overcomemy trauma, because it was traumatic for me.
I want to bring my daughter here. It’s alreadybeen five years since I’ve seen her. And it’s beenreally, really difficult to get her passport. All I cando is talk to her on the phone. Sometimes shesays, if you love me, you’d come to see me. But Ican’t go back. All my past is there. People knoweverything. I don’t want to be there. I don’t wantto.
Esperanza is also a survivor. She’s entered highschool, and still lives with her baby in our mothershome. She continues to visit Irma.
When she comes here, she’s very relaxed. She’ssure of herself. There aren’t words to describe her.She wants to study, to be a girl of substance.
It’s like talking to a different person. She is nowacting like a child. She’s now talking about howshe wants her hair. How she’s looking forward to go to school.
One of things about slavery prosecutions is oncethey are discovered, they are successfullyprosecuted. From what I understand, there’salmost a 100% conviction rate across the UnitedStates. The real problem is the discovery of theslavery situation.
The general public really plays a very importantrole in helping us to address this problem. I thinkthe important thing is to educate yourself ontrafficking.
Thank God she’s all right. That’s the best reward.That I was able to find this girl and help her. Anintelligent girl with a strong desire to makesomething of herself.
This is what I want to say more than anything. Ifsomeone is in the same situation I was, don’t beafraid. Try to escape, and get help so that itdoesn’t continue. Because the reality is that here,even if you’re undocumented, they will help you.There are many good people here who helped me.
At least 500,000 undocumented immigrants enterthe US each year. The State Department estimatesthat as many as 20,000 of them are victims ofhuman trafficking. Since the Trafficking VictimsProtection Act was passed in 2000, more than1,000 victims of trafficking have been rescued.More than 200 traffickers have been convicted.
To find out more, visit our website,www.livesforsale.com
Funding for this program was provided by the Catholic Communication Campaign.