Pressure mounted in the U.S. this fall, resulting in the closure of the erotic services section in the States. This left Canadians asking the question of whether Craigslist would take similar action here as well.
Author and UBC law professor Benjamin Perrin is relieved. According to his book, Invisible Chains, Craigslist has been a medium of choice for traffickers who sell exploited girls and women online. He claimed he was ready and willing to lay private criminal charges against the company if they did not respond to the letters by Canada’s provincial and federal governments, individual citizens, and NGOs.
I can’t tell you how exciting it has been for me to watch this unfold. Corporations have so much sway in our society, but this is an example of what can happen when citizens sign petitions, send letters, and make their voices heard about something that is important. For those of you who were part of this process, WELL DONE!
Some say that trafficking victims will just be exploited through other means and other websites. But while ‘business’ will be scattered as a result of Craigslist closing its doors, Canadians have made a statement that we do not tolerate the exploitation and sale of young women and girls for sex.
This sentiment is like a domino effect. And we’ve just knocked over the first few blocks. Human trafficking will end when this sentiment permeates our society. That is why I am excited today.
Props to Benjamin Perrin, MP Joy Smith, Federal Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, Attorney General Chris Bentley, and countless others who have led this effort. And of course, to all of our readers who cared enough to take action! Let’s make Canada inhospitable to traffickers.
I’m going to celebrate with a cup of tea and some Christmas cookies.