The ultimate way for victims of sex trafficking to fight back against their oppressors has arrived. A new program, launched by the Dutch anti-trafficking group Free a Girl, seeks to empower survivors of sex trafficking by helping them pursue legal careers.
The School for Justice in India provides funding for victims who want to attend college and pursue a degree in law. Sex trafficking is an overwhelming problem in India and other parts of the world and so often, perpetrators are not brought to justice.
By empowering the women who experience this awful crime in their own lives, the School for Justice is most certainly helping create lawyers who will pursue sex traffickers with the up most passion.
The school, which began this April with 19 students, cannot even release the names of the women participating for safety reasons. Sex trafficking appears to be a well-protected network that is too lucrative for the perpetrators to let anyone slide by.
As one survivor told Huffington Post:
“I left the house, but I didn’t realize that without money or directions I would not be able to find my way home. I asked [a woman begging on the street] for help, but she took me to a brothel and sold me to it. I was 13 years old.”
The same victim said she is excited to fight against such injustice and wants to become a lawyer to help other children like her.
Despite strong anti-trafficking laws in India, thousands of children enter the network each year on the promise of jobs and other opportunities. They have no idea they are entering a slave trade from which it is very difficult to escape.
The School for Justice seeks out those who have escaped and want to pursue law. They provide coverage for school fees, living arrangements, food and transportation as the girls train and apply to universities. The monetary value is important because after sex slavery, many of these women are actually spurned from their own families and have nowhere to go.
At $3,400 per year per student, the price tag isn’t small but to make a dent in one of the world’s most devastating criminal circles around, it seems almost miniscule.