Carrots, Sticks and the TIP Report: Understanding the US Government’s Anti-Trafficking Efforts in Southeast Asia

Last week the US State Department issued its annual Trafficking In Persons (TIP) Report, which ranks every country in the world according to their adherence to the US government’s anti-trafficking mandate. For the first time, Thailand was designated “Tier 3,” the lowest “rung” on the TIP Report’s ladder. The Report, which is published by the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking, describes “Tier 1” countries as those demonstrating sufficient anti-trafficking efforts; “Tier 2” as those that have begun to demonstrate [...]

By |2018-05-12T15:03:46+00:00July 2nd, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Where Art and Feminist Politics Intersect: Dramatizing Research in Thailand’s Anti-Trafficking Movement

Recently, important revelations have come out about the problematic policies of the anti-trafficking movement. Last month, Newsweek broke a story about the Somaly Mam Foundation, a famous Cambodian-based anti-trafficking NGO that has been fabricating stories of sex trafficking to appeal to their donor base. The story was shocking, but to those who understand the contested terrain of the anti-trafficking movement, it wasn’t surprising. The question of what role NGOs should play in “rescuing” women from the sex industry has been debated [...]

By |2018-05-12T15:03:46+00:00June 26th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Trafficking on the Burma-China Border: Why the U.S. Should Care About the Conflict in Kachin State

In recent weeks, warfare in Burma’s Kachin State has increased and is now making its way closer to the Burma-China border. While the international community has paid little attention to the Kachin conflict over the past few years, understanding its complexity is now more important than ever. Failing to do so could have dire implications on the lives of Kachin women, and on diplomatic relations in the region. Kachin State is an ethnic area in northern Burma that has long [...]

By |2018-05-12T15:03:46+00:00April 14th, 2014|Uncategorized|2 Comments

Why the U.S. Government’s Anti-Trafficking Efforts are Hurting Women Around the World

When people hear the word, “trafficking,” they often think of young women held in bondage, forced into prostitution against their will. This is certainly a circumstance that takes place around the globe—one that is real, and very serious. But often, sex workers, many of whom are migrants seeking a better life in a country far from home, know what they are getting into when they enter the trade. The real problem they face is that their work is criminalized. Anti-trafficking [...]

By |2018-05-12T15:03:46+00:00April 13th, 2014|Uncategorized|5 Comments

Leaked Amnesty International Document Calls for Decriminalization of Sex Work

When scholars and activists fight for the rights of sex workers, people occassionally take notice. But when a humanitarian giant gets on board the sex worker rights movement, its time for the world to stop and listen. Amnesty International, one of the most prestigious human rights organizations in the world recently made headlines when a document entitled “Decriminalisation of Sex Work: Policy Background Document” was leaked. The document outlines the organization’s emerging stance on defending the rights of sex workers through [...]

By |2018-05-12T15:03:46+00:00March 28th, 2014|Uncategorized|2 Comments