Nepal Earthquake: Trafficking Concerns

800_nepalThe recent earthquake in Nepal has proved devastating to the small, impoverished nation. The death toll currently stands at around 6,500 and looks set to rise further. However, if the loss of life, damage to homes and infrastructure and risk of disease weren't overwhelming enough, there may well be a far more sinister consequence to the Nepal earthquake. The following is taken from an article by IJM:

Catastrophic disasters like this one only increase the risk of trafficking for poor families and girls. According to a 2012 report from the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction, "some people exploit the chaotic environment that follows a natural disaster to engage in criminal activities, such as selling children for the purpose of illegal adoption, forced labour or sexual exploitation.”

“Many people are now homeless, and girls will be lured to leave, believing Nepal is now prone to disaster,” explains one IJM social worker, Moumita Khati. “Disasters tend to make people more vulnerable to trafficking.”

As many as 7,000 women and girls are trafficked from Nepal to India every year, and around 200,000 are now working in Indian brothels, according to UNICEF. The United Nations estimates that Nepal is one of Asia’s poorest nations, with unemployment over 40% and per capita GDP of just $1,000.

Let's be in prayer for the devastated nation of Nepal and especially for those left vulnerable to evil traffickers who would gladly exploit those in such dire need for greedy gain.