Welcome delegates! My name is Monica Stainer and I will be chairing your
committee, UNIFEM, at the Edison Model United Nations Conference. I am currently a
senior and have been a part of MUN for four years. Besides MUN, I am actively involved
in my school. I am a member of our school’s Associate Student Body and have been the
Sophomore Class President, Junior Class President, and currently Commissioner of
Assemblies. Dancing has been a part of my life for 14 years and I am the captain on the
Edison Song/Cheer team. I absolutely love traveling and I have been to over a dozen
counties. I am looking forward to our committee and the solutions we create. Regarding
preparation, I strongly encourage each of you to have complete knowledge about the
topic and your country’s policy and be able to present your ideas with diplomacy. If you
have any questions about the topics or the structure of committee, please do not hesitate
to ask via email at firstname.lastname@example.org . Good Luck!
II. BACKGROUND OF THE TOPIC
According to the UNODC, trafficking of women “involves an act of recruiting,
transporting, transferring, harbouring, or receiving a person through the use of force,
coercion or other means, for the purpose of exploitation”. The trafficking of persons is
the second largest criminal activity in the international community; the first is the illicit
drug trade. This worldwide issue involves source, transit, and destination countries where
females are tricked and forced into exploitation. Researchers have discovered that there
are an estimated 127 source countries, 98 transit countries, and 137 source countries.
Trafficking is most prevalent in the regions of Southeast Asia and Europe. The countries
where the trafficking of women occurs the most are Thailand, Cambodia, Russia, Japan,
Belgium, Israel, Italy, and Turkey. It is a global issue for it occurs in a minimum of 161
countries. The U.S Department of State’s Trafficking Persons Report stated that of the
800,000 individuals trafficked each year, 80% of these individuals are females. It is
considered an “invisible crime” because it is done illegally through sneaking women
across borders. The global economy profits about 32 billion dollars each year from the
trafficking industry, where almost 16 billion dollars is profited in industrialized nations
and 10 billion dollars is profited in Asia.
Trafficked women are forced into hard labor and are sexually exploited. Females
are more vulnerable to trafficking than males because they are promised a secure job, but
then are taken into brothels and forced to work in the sex industry as prostitutes or in the
pornography industry. Once they arrive, their identification papers, including passports
and driver’s license, are confiscated, leaving the woman with no identity. Studies have
shown that 70% of women trafficked are forced into sexual exploitation, whereas the
remaining 30% are coerced into hard labor. Living conditions are unsanitary and the
victims are at risk for disease. Workers in factories are exposed to pesticides and
chemicals and are often malnourished. HIV/AIDS is a major issue in response to
prostitution and sexual exploitation because the women are not protected from the
retrovirus and can easily spread it to potential partners. Psychological issues often arise
from trafficked women due to the fact they are taken from their family, stripped of their
identity, exploited with either hard labor or prostitution, and physically and/or
III. UNITED NATIONS INVOLVEMENT
Trafficking women has been a serious topic in the United Nations since it’s
creation in 1945. UNIFEM, the United Nations Development Fund for Women, was
established in 1976 and this organization focuses on the gender equality and
empowerment of women. Trafficking is addressed by the United Nations Office on Drugs
and Crime. These UN Organizations, along with the United Nations Human Rights
Council, focus on the empowerment of women and children and protecting their rights. In
2007, the UNODC launched the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human
Trafficking (UN.GIFT). This program works in cooperation with other UN organizations
in order to eradicate the trafficking of persons, protect victims of trafficking and ensure
their human rights. Considering trafficking is an “underground” industry, it is difficult for
the UN to face the issue directly.
A/RES/55/25, passed on January 8, 2001, adopts the United Nations Convention
against Transnational Organized Crime and the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish
Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children. This protocol addresses all
member states and focuses on the victims’ psychological, physical, and emotional
stability by providing rehabilitation centers and housing, enforcing the laws against
trafficking and punishing those responsible for the illegal transferring of persons, and the
status of victims in destination countries. It also addresses the need for border control,
without infringing on a country’s sovereignty, and to ensure the security of travel and
identity documents. The protocol calls for bilateral and multilateral cooperation,
settlement of disputes, research, the use of mass media to advertise this issue, and the
empowerment of women in society as preventative measures to this topic.
IV. POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS
Trafficking is primarily initiated by the female population’s desperation for jobs
in order to support their family. A possible solution is to create jobs, which would
employ women. This will prevent women from accepting offers from traffickers.
Another possible solution is to focus on the empowerment of women and gender equality.
This can be implemented through education to raise awareness about this global issue and
by providing vocational training. Women and girls should also be taught how to defend
themselves in dangerous situation and how to receive help if they do fall into the traps of
trafficking. An anti-trafficking program that should be expanded is The Polaris Project.
This involves a hotline, available 24 hours a day, where victims can report their
trafficking incident, or contact the emergency line where action must be taken
The process and outcome of trafficking leaves the woman in emotional turmoil.
Rehabilitation and support centers should be provided for the women. This will allow the
woman to consult others who faced the same circumstances and discuss their trauma with
a psychologist or support group.
V. QUESTIONS TO CONSIDER
1. What actions has your country taken to eradicate women trafficking?
2. Is your country a source, transit, or destination country?
3. How will your country promote women empowerment?
4. How do you plan on securing your national borders?
5. Has your country signed or ratified the United Nations Convention against
Transnational Organized Crime?