Trafficking in Thailand

The purpose

Posted in Uncategorized by constancedykhuizen on March 27, 2010

I moved to Northern Thailand a year and a half ago to work for a trafficking prevention organization. Though this in no way qualifies me as an expert on the subject, at least a dozen people from back home have emailed me to ask what they can do to either find a job with an anti-trafficking organization or  how they can help with the problem in general. This blog is an answer to those questions.

The concept of “trafficking,” like the act itself, is difficult to pin down. I came here thinking that trafficking encompassed mainly forced labor and sex slavery, but trafficking is even bigger and uglier than that. My focus will be primarily on the problem of the sex trade in Thailand and how trafficking exacerbates social inequality, disease and ignored injustices. There are also many encouraging efforts to combat trafficking that are as varied as private orphanages, government initiatives and rehabilitation programs.

People may take issue with my definition of what is trafficking or what helps prevent trafficking, but really I’m just sharing my experience. In addition to providing information, I want to personally commit to really exploring issues instead of just taking it easy, as it is so tempting to do in the land of sanook (fun) and araigodai (whatever). Trafficking is quite the cause celebre right now (not to mention a centuries-old injustice), and I find myself smack dab in the middle of the largest recruiting grounds for the sex trade in the world. This blog is my answer to how to help, my personal research and my responsibility as someone living in northern Thailand.

4 Responses

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  1. Jill said, on September 14, 2010 at 1:20 am

    Hi Thaitrafficking, I stumbled upon your blog while searching for existing research studies done on human trafficking and Thailand. I am a native Thai and recently graduated with a doctorate in clinical psychology. I am a research psychologist in the areas of HIV/AIDS and substance abuse in NYC and in the process of reconnecting with my passion on combating human trafficking. I salute your personal dedication and commitment to the topic and would like to offer my help in any way appropriate and helpful to you. Thank you very much.

  2. thaitrafficking said, on September 16, 2010 at 6:22 am

    Thanks. I appreciate your comment even though you must know I’m not really that effective at doing much about the issue of trafficking. Thais are reluctant to discuss the realities, and as a fahrang I recognize my limitations in being able to discuss the dangers or the rights and wrongs with any authority. I just want to make people – both Thais and foreigners – aware of what is happening even if I’m not able to directly do that much about it.

    Please let me know you if you’d like to know more about my organization or if you’ll be coming back to Thailand.

  3. Jill said, on September 19, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    Hi there. Thanks for your email. I agree with you about the hesitancy among Thai people to openly discuss the issue. I believe that it partly stems from a shame-based culture when it comes to sex in general and also the detachment from the problem as a coping strategy for not really knowing what to do about it. What does your organization do? Is it based in Thailand?
    Thank you.

  4. mattabar said, on July 2, 2011 at 1:43 am

    The problem is girls are goods not people and they have a price, until well paid jobs are available for uneducated people, trafficking will continue and peoples lives will be at risk, you do not see politicians children or children of the police do this work so why should they profit from this.
    Even International company’s use child labour here to make their goods so its a up hill battle

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