Monday, October 09, 2006

Stop the Demand

A week or so ago I got the following email from a friend in NZ. Last night at hOME, with the accompaniment of current favourite, Michael Franti, we acted on Sarah's request.

What language are your fears?
What language are your tears?

-Michael Franti

Hi there,
One issue that is guaranteed to make me weep is vulnerable people being trafficked to meet the demand for the purchase of sex.
The Salvation Army has instigated a global weekend of Prayer and Fasting for sex trafficking victims, due to take place this coming weekend (Friday 29 Sept to Sunday 1 Oct).I thought that you might be interested to read Stop Demand's statement in support.

Love to you all,
Sarah O'Brien
Statement to International Listserves
Stop Demand Foundation, New Zealand
September 28, 2006

Sex trafficking fuelled by male demand – Salvation Army's Prayer and Fasting Weekend

This weekend's Prayer and Fasting for victims of sex trafficking, organised by the Salvation Army throughout many parts of the world, is a praiseworthy proactive response to an unacceptable global scourge. Trafficking, mostly of young women and children for the global sex trade, is the third largest international criminal activity and a multi-billion dollar industry.

While traffickers are frequently portrayed as "evil", unscrupulous, and brutal, we are reminded that they are only intermediaries. Traffickers' lucrative earnings are made possible only through the huge global demand from sex-buying men who seek a 'smorgasbord' of mostly-female bodies of varying ages, ethnicities, and physical characteristics, to fulfil their various wants and fantasies.

Sex trafficking is preventable. It would end tomorrow, if male demand for paid sex stopped today. If there were no demand, there would be no supply. Traffickers would simply move on to another marketable commodity.

Throughout this weekend's remembrance of sex trafficking victims, let us also challenge the behaviour, attitudes and beliefs of the millions of sex-buying men who fuel sex trafficking.

Until we see a decrease in demand, sex trafficking will continue unabated.

Denise Ritchie
Stop Demand Foundation, New Zealand

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