Not only do they charge to get them there, they charge them for getting them a job, food, and shelter. Debts of $50,000 are not uncommon.This creates a debt that the victims can never repay. They are exploited for profit and treated as a commodity.
There is a level of acceptance in Japanese society. The Yakuzas influence is institutionalized through a series of laws that require organized crime groups to be registered. There are 86,000 members!
Women are now required to take dance or singing lessons for two years now before they can get their entertainment visa.
They were often beaten, starved, and made to endure abortions. Only a few of the women survived, and those that did are in their 80’s now and they suffer permanent physical and emotional damage.
Comfort Women were forced into sexual slavery for the Japanese military during World War II.
NGO’s have a difficult time functioning in Japan, as they are self funded and struggle to survive. The government is not fond of activists and Japanese women have difficulty tackling controversy, especially in a male dominated situation.
The report categorizes countries into 3 tiers, with 3 being the lowest. Tier placement is supposed to reflect a country’s effort in addressing the trafficking issue. After 2003 a country that carries a level 3 tier was supposed to carry ramifications for their eligibility to receive U. S. aid.
Poverty, homelessness, hunger, and domestic violence are all issues that would encourage a woman to work in another country. In the 90’s Korean and Japanese women addressed the Comfort Women issue but they did not delve into any other issues.
Laura Bowmans Japan
Japan<br />And Human Trafficking<br />By Laura Bowman<br />
But Japan has a Dark Side<br />Japan is one of the worlds top destinations for sex trafficking of foreign women. <br />The State Department estimates 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked annually, the majority of victims were trafficked into Japan’s growing, global commercial sex trade, to work in bars and brothels. <br />Many of the traffickers are reportedly part of Japanese organized crime syndicates, particularly the Yakuza. (The Japanese Mafia)<br />
The Yakuza is a Strong Force in Japan<br />The Yakuza has been a dominating force in Japan for the last fifty years. <br />The Yakuza charge the trafficked victims large sums to get them into Japan. <br />Debt bondage.<br />
The Rich Yakuza<br />Yakuza are also engaged in legitimate business activities . <br />Yakuza involvement is a major obstacle in tackling the problem of human trafficking in Japan. <br />The sex industry in Japan is a very lucrative business generating a profit of 10 yen or US $115 Billion dollars per year! <br />
What makes Japan stand out as a trafficking hot spot? <br />Japan’s tolerance of the commercial sex industry. <br />Their liberal use of a “two year Entertainment Visa”. <br />One sex zone in Tokyo, spans about 18 miles and has 3,500 sex facilities, including strip theaters, peep shows, soap lands, porno shops, telephone clubs, karaoke bars, and clubs. <br />
What makes Japan stand out as a trafficking hot spot? <br /> Legal advertisements, called “pink chirashi," promoting videos and massage parlors are placed in mailboxes, and passed out on the streets.<br />80% of internet child pornography is produced in Japan, porn is sold and read openly. <br />There is a lack of low skilled employment opportunities in Japan. <br />Many women migrate to Japan to work as “hostesses” in their bars and clubs. <br />
What makes Japan stand out as a trafficking hot spot? <br />There is no law prohibiting child pornography in Japan.<br />Pornography is so pervasive, even schoolchildren have access to comic books with pornographic contents. Sex magazines can be bought at vending machines. Twenty-four hour hard core pornography is available through cable television. <br />
A Converted cigarette machine selling “used school girl panties” $80.00<br />
Japan has a long history of allowing the victimization of women. <br />50,000 to 200,000 Korean women were forced to serve in military brothels during World War II. <br />These “Comfort Women” were forced to have sex with as many as fifty Japanese soldiers a day. <br />
Here is an actual price chart with the cost of spending some comfort time. <br />
What is being done to aid victims of trafficking to Japan? <br />In the past Japan has done little to deal with trafficking. <br />In December 2002 the Japanese Government signed the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons (a supplement to the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, and known as the Palermo Protocol). <br />In 2006 through the United Nations Japan donated over two million dollars to assist returned trafficking survivors in Thailand and the Philippines <br />
What is being done to aid victims of trafficking? <br />The U.S. Department of State’s annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report is a major player in combating the problem. <br />Activists however claim that this system appears to be a catch all for countries that are clearly doing little or nothing to prevent further trafficking of women. <br />
Women’s groups in Japan<br />There is a group of women who established the ‘Okinawan Women Act against Military Violence’ but the group has not gained widespread or governmental support. <br />The Help Asian Women’s Center has set up the ‘Japan Network against Trafficking in Persons’ but the group has been unable to raise public outrage enough to support the cause. <br />A program through the International Labor Organization aims to assist women in reintegrating through education, legal support , micro lending, counseling, medical services and assistance in setting up self help groups. <br />
Things that may help <br />Social issues need to be addressed in all under developed countries. <br />The Japanese women’s movement needs to be strengthened. <br />The passing of legislation to criminalize traffickers are largely ineffective because a top down legislative approach assumes that there is no corruption in the government or police force.<br />