ISSUE: The emotional damage of human trafficking

Last month, one in eight chile victims of trafficking attempted suicide, according to a study by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, published in Jama Pediatrics. The research was based on a sample of adolescents aged between 10 and 17, who were trafficked for sexual exploitation, forced labour and begging. The results show that the consequences of mistreatment can be devastating. As many as 56% of the young victims became seriously depressed, 33% had anxiety disorders and 12% attempted suicide or self-harming. The authors note, however, that such serious mental disorders weren’t only due to traumatic treatment suffered since being taken from their homes but also to previous forms of abuse within the family.

by Annalisa Lista