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Human Rights Violations

“Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world…” — The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

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Adopted in light of the experiences of World War II and under the leadership of Eleanor Roosevelt, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is the global written expression of the rights to which all people are entitled by virtue of their birth. Ratified by the UN General Assembly at its third session on Dec. 10, 1948, the UDHR is the cornerstone of 20th century international human rights law.

Although not legally binding, the UDHR is a global affirmation that every human being has inalienable, equal and indivisible rights regardless of sex, race, class or religion. It tell us that we are entitled to live in dignity, with bodily integrity and free from violence and discrimination, among many other rights.

Human trafficking in all its forms is an extreme violation of human rights. It is predicated on violence, denial of freedom and abuse of power. Rooted in misogyny, racism and other systems of inequality, the sex trade preys on the most vulnerable people and infringes their most basic rights for profit. Sex trafficking and sexual exploitation create particular rights abuses against women and girls because they are women and girls. The expansive multi-billion dollar sex trade is a perpetrator of these human rights violations. Its pillars — traffickers, pimps, brothel owners, sex buyers — carry out extreme acts of violence, both physical and psychological, against the mostly women and girls they buy and sell. They prey on vulnerabilities and violate the inherent dignity and bodily integrity of women and girls on a daily basis, treating them as sexual objects men can purchase in order to generate profits and sustain the sex trade.

Women and girls are not goods, but human beings whose rights governments are obligated to uphold.

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