tisdag 5 augusti 2014

Brief summary of research

Social justice, globalization and sex trafficking - A qualitative study on support to victims of the sex trade, in an Indian regional context. 

Karnataka has turned out to be a hotspot destination for human trafficking. Unfortunately many migrants and others fall prey for traffickers, often due to the dark sides of globalization. The overall purpose of the assessment was to reach a better understanding of available victim support services for victims of sex trafficking in Karnataka, and challenges thereof, as to better harmonise services and respond to the rights of victims. The method of research was of qualitative character with ethnographic elements, with fieldwork conducted in Karnataka, India. The research provides a mapping of victim support services (with a focus on shelters), while also examining challenges in relation to policy, strategy and implementation. 

The situation today paints out a picture of confusion in terms of a victim support system. In general, the shelters were unhygienic with poor sanitation and offered limited health services. They were also inadequate in terms of security, cooperation and coordination, as well as education and experience among shelter staff. At the moment the ‘Protective and Rehabilitative Homes’ (so-called Ujjawala shelters) are not adequate enough, and do not exclusively focus on sex trafficked victims. As such, there should be specialised assistance (with health clinics), especially since sex trafficked victims often need specialised care, psycho-socially as well as physically. 

A socially just system should understand and value human right, as well as recognise the dignity of every human being. If there is a lack of a functioning support system, and especially a holistic multi-sectoral approach, victims risk physical as well as mental health problems. A non-functioning system can also spur socio-economical injustices, as victims risk end up in poverty if they are not properly integrated back into society. As a cross-cutting socio-economic as well as political issue it undermines the health, security and safety of not only people directly concerned but the society in general as well. 

Further, another outcome of the study was also that I promised to 'do more', what I initially told myself in the beginning of my social work studies. During the research I discussed with the NGO Vidyaranya (that has established a Ujjawala shelter) that I would try to help them, hopefully in cooperation with the corporate community, by using a CSR-approach. 

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