Human Trafficking Awareness
It is safe to say that the majority of all the children that are in our children’s homes were once at extreme risk of being abducted or sold to the human traffickers.
Human trafficking is a growing business in West Bengal, and we hear many distressing stories of young women and children being taken from their homes to be corralled into the horror of a life of prostitution and forced labour.
40% of all India’s Human Trafficking cases are reported in West Bengal with 3,579 reported in 2016. But, it is very difficult to obtain a true figure or measure the full extent of the crisis because of the level of corruption and deceit at local level. Victims’ families are not taken seriously and often discouraged from making an official report to the police. Even if Traffickers are prosecuted they are soon released on bail or force their accusers to drop the charges.
In the same period (2016) 70,000 people were officially reported as missing in West Bengal. 53,654 were women and 16,881 were children. This would give a closer figure to the true measure of this unimaginable crisis.
On April 8th 2018 the Asian Times reported, ‘But this stark terrain has spawned a steady rise in human trafficking, with gangs increasingly able to penetrate different layers of the society, from community clubs, village councils, to local political units and even police, which makes it nearly impossible for the victims to seek justice’.
Stepping Stones is providing villages in East India with information and contact details of Non-Government Organisations that can provide help and further information to families who are concerned or who have been affected and we are also networking with other like-minded organisations in India that are lobbying government to effect change and eventually eradicate the problem.