Human Shopping Spree

By Amber


Screen Shot 2019-07-15 at 3.15.01 PMShopping in a grocery store has everything you could possibly want––except humans. There’s a whole other market for that.

Human trafficking is dehumanizing. Millions of humans treated like toys at anybody’s disposal for money. But unlike those cotton-stuffed, wind-up, plastic objects, humans have feelings which are disregarded for the sake of money.

You’re probably unaware that Malaysia’s ranking was downgraded by the US state department to Tier 3 for “Countries whose governments do not fully comply with the minimum standards (Trafficking Victims Protection Act’s (TVPA)) and are not making significant efforts to do so.”

There is nothing more malicious than slapping a price tag on your own species and it is clear the Malaysian government does not care for the well-being nor bother to understand those who have been trafficked.

Last year, News Straits Times reported that Malaysian authorities rescued 127 Sri Lankans off the coast of Johor.

All of them are being fined by Malaysia for not possessing legal documentation to enter and leave the country.

As a group of people that have power over a whole country, charging someone for something that they weren’t responsible for is the most closed-minded thing someone could possibly do. Those in power clearly don’t bother to understand the actual situation at hand.

The Malaysian government is not responsible enough to handle cases related to human trafficking.

According to the Home Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin pledged to further improve Malaysia’s anti-trafficking efforts by giving focus on the protection of human trafficking victims. So here is how they failed to follow through with this pledge.

On April 17th, Malaysian Human Rights Commission and rights group Fortify Rights said that authorities had “destroyed one of the camps a day after its discovery, wiping out evidence that could have aided police investigations.”

Authorities failed to protect these people. Last year they said they were going to help people by protecting them. With this camp that the police found, they wanted to investigate the camp to find a way to prevent this from happening again but have failed thanks to those who burned down the evidence.

Not only is the Malaysian government unable to handle such a huge responsibility, but they also clearly are not good enough to be able to communicate with other branches of authority to follow through with a good investigation.

A stable government is clearly needed for a successful country and with the lack thereof in terms of communication, it is clear that they cannot handle human trafficking issues when there are other issues that must be addressed first.

When you have work that is due tomorrow and work that is due in a week, isn’t it simple to choose which one to do first?

Last year on February 11, a maid, Adelina was found fighting for her life. Her legs were covered with burn marks and parts of her body has “pus oozing.” Though she was taken to the hospital for recovery, she died because of organ failure. 

Police built up a case with tons of evidence but justice was never served for Adelina. “the prosecution has failed to bring justice for her when there was substantive evidence in this case.”

Over a year passed and they were still unable to serve justice for someone who was forced into labor and abused when they clearly stated that they would try their best to protect people who have been trafficked.

This is not an editorial for hating on Malaysia but it is unfortunate that a country that is still trying to improve itself everyday has to deal with large topics such as trafficking. To be able to help huge world crises, a government must be strong and impactful.


Works Cited

Bernama. “127 human trafficking victims rescued”. New Straits Times. May 6, 2018. Date of Access: April 4, 2019.

“Government considers new measures to tackle human trafficking”. The Sun Daily. June 30, 2018. Date of Access: April 21, 2019.

“Malaysia begins inquiry into 2015 discovery of mass graves, human trafficking camps”. The Edge Markets. April 17, 2019. Date of Access: April 22, 2019.

Ong, Lyn. “Malaysia’s human trafficking record”. Date of Access: April 21, 2019.

“Tier Placements”. U.S. Department of State. Date of Access: April 21, 2019.

“Where is the justice for abused maid Adelina?”. MalaysiaKini. April 20, 2019. Date of Access: April 22, 2019.