In our last two parts of this series, we saw about
- How to prevent your child from missing in a crowded place
- How to teach your child to handle getting lost in public
In this article, we will see what is child trafficking and what are the aftermath effects. My research towards writing this article literally left me shivered when I read numerous incidents, facts, etc,. Children are trafficked majorly for child domestic labor, bonded labor, child begging, drug trades, organ harvesting, commercial sexual exploitation and more. Children are abducted from the streets, parks, beaches and other crowded public places.
According to a news report from 2014, about 135,000 children are estimated to be trafficked in our country.
Would you believe? Trafficking is the 3rd largest industry in the world and more than half of the human trafficking victims worldwide are children.
While the reality is intimidating, it is important to understand so that we will be more cautious. Let’s get started.
What is child trafficking?
Child trafficking is about taking children out of their protective environment and preying on their vulnerability for the purpose of exploitation - as defined by international labor organization. Trafficking boundary could be within a country, across national borders, sometimes, it’s across continents.
Facts about child abduction
The very first step in child trafficking is abduction. In protecting your kid from potential abductors, it is essential to be aware of what we are dealing with. Here are some key facts regarding abduction and kidnapping.
- Abduction can be classified in 3 categories based on the perpetrator for criminal purposes
- A child is abducted by a stranger for exploitation.
- A child is abducted to be raised by the abductor.
- Parental abduction - when a child is forcefully removed from the other parent.
- In most of the cases, kids are abducted by men.
- About two-third of the victims are female children.
- 40% of the abduction incidents ends in death of the child.
- Abductions mostly happens from park, streets and other busy public places by luring the kids into their vehicles.
- Kids are very rarely abducted from their school grounds.
What can YOU do to safeguard your kid
- Never leave your child alone in a public place. Accompany and supervise your young children in places like malls, theaters, parks and bathrooms in public places
- Never leave your child alone in a car
- Always be careful in choosing your kid’s babysitter and nannies.
- Talk to your kid about abduction in a non-threatening way.
- Know your child’s whereabouts all the time.
- At the age 2 or 3 start teaching them your name, address and contact numbers.
- If you have arranged someone to pick your kid from school everyday, discuss the arrangements with the kid and let them know whom to trust.
- Discuss if they have met or spoken to someone new. Always keep the communication between you and your child open.
Teach your kids to
- Never accept candies, balloons or any gift from a stranger.
- Seek your permission to leave your house, before going to park, play area or to someone’s home.
- Never wander off to unknown and lonely places
- Scream and run away if someone tries to grab them or force them into their cars
- Be destructive, hit and knock things around to draw attention if someone tries to grab them
- How to handle when they are lost in public. Read more
- Never to ‘keep a secret’, when they are asked to do so by an adult-not even a close relative. Even if they threaten to harm them.
- Inform you when a stranger asks your kid some personal questions, expose himself/herself.
Not many children are found after they are lost. But, there are a few fortunate parents who did recover their little ones. And, that’s nothing short of a miracle. In our next article, we will see such miraculous incidents and the fortunate parents.
The few minutes you spend teaching your kid about these safety rules will make the difference between life and death. Happy and safe parenting!