By: Dr. Maria Cristina Regueiro, President and CEO of Florida National University
Human Trafficking is indeed a malady that is affecting not only Florida, but our entire world. More often than not, our news media outlets are constantly reporting that young girls and in several instances boys, are being trafficked, meaning bought, sold, and traded in a heartbeat. How can this continue to happen in the 21st Century? No one really knows, but we can speculate, that if there continues to be a high demand for victims of human trafficking, then criminals will make sure that their buyers’ needs will be met. As appalling as it may sound, Human Trafficking is also known as Modern Day Slavery. Usually, when we refer to this perverse conduct, we are signaling out three main components: Sex Trafficking, Labor Trafficking and Organ Trafficking. When we hear the term Sex trafficking, we automatically know that a profitable sex act is being brought upon a victim by force and deceitfulness from the Human Trafficker to perform sexual actions. This is also known as sexual exploitation. Unfortunately, the average victim in several cases may be forced to have sex up to 20-48 times a day, as noted by the Polaris Project. What makes matters even worse, is that a Trafficker can make anywhere from $150,000-$200,000 per child victim each year, as verified by the U.S. Justice Department, National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. On the other hand, Labor Trafficking is also an alarming felonious doing. These victims are without a doubt, being subjugated to work long hours and not even get paid for their services or have any access to their earnings. They are not treated as human beings, but rather as means to the traffickers’ ends. Lastly, Organ Trafficking is also a ghastly crime! Victims are either forced to give up one of their organs for sale, or they are even maliciously treated for a disease that they do not have, and that is when the trafficker makes his/her move to get the supposedly ill organ removed, and consequently, sold for a hefty price.
On Friday, January 29th at 10:00 A.M. the Honorable Katherine Fernandez Rundle, State Attorney, is joining forces with Florida National University, the Dr. Jose Regueiro Foundation, Inc., and the POWERHOUSE Human Trafficking WALK Steering Planning Committee, to host a Human Trafficking Awareness WALK. This noteworthy and significant WALK will take place at Florida National University’s Hialeah Campus -4425 W. Jose Regueiro (20th) Avenue beginning at 10:00 A.M.
We want to invite the public at large to attend this very significant free WALK, in an effort to show a Community CALL TO ACTION, to STOP Human Trafficking not only in Florida, but throughout our Global Domain! Don’t miss this opportunity to participate, and let our collective voice be heard against Human Trafficking…