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March 4, 2016

Friday News Roundup: Healthcare and Human Trafficking

Every Friday, Polaris highlights noteworthy human trafficking stories in the media for our readers to check out, share, and respond to. Tell us your thoughts on these stories in the discussion below!

Healthcare Takes On the Fight Against Trafficking
Marketplace 3/2/2016
Last fall, in the emergency room of a city hospital, a tracking device was removed from a sex trafficking victim. The device had been placed there by her boyfriend who was forcing her to sell sex. 88% of sex trafficking victims end up in ERs and clinics; however, only one-quarter of medical professionals think human trafficking impacts their patients. In the first of a three part series, Marketplace examines the role healthcare providers could play in the fight against human trafficking—if they only knew what to look for.

Inside Big Chocolate's Child Labor Problem
Fortune 3/1/2016
More than 70% of the world’s cocoa is grown in West Africa, where 2.1 million West African children are being forced to harvest cocoa, which is very dangerous and physically taxing work. For over a decade, the $100 billion chocolate industry has pledged to decrease child labor in Ivory Coast and Ghana. But progress has been slow, if not nonexistent altogether.

The victims of the 21st-century slave trade
CNBC 3/2/2016
In ongoing coverage of the the signing of the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act: Obama’s signing of the bill provides hope that the number of labor trafficking victims worldwide will decrease. The ruling will go into effect on March 10th and will empower agencies to investigate companies suspected of using forced and child labor. But enforcing the new rule—and expanding upon it—may prove difficult.

Photo credit: Flickr / Phalinn Ooi

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