Child traffickers love earthquakes -- and tsunamis, typhoons, and hurricanes, too. In fact they love any disaster where:
- Families are uprooted.
- Kids are separated from their parents.
- Kids wander the streets along with thousands of others.
- Kids sleep in the streets or open fields because they're suddenly homeless.
- Law enforcement, military, and other security are otherwise occupied.
Traffickers can operate right in broad daylight and who's going to spot them? After all, they don't wear nametags or hand out business cards that say, "Hi, I'm a trafficker."
They can even claim they're "rescuing" children -- and who'll stop them and ask for credentials when aftershocks are rattling everyone?
Can you see why child traffickers love natural disasters?
When the tsunami hit Asia in December 2004, traffickers were right there within 24 hours picking up kids, often under the guise of helping them.
Born2Fly's partner agency in Nepal
As soon as the earthquake hit Nepal on Saturday, we heard from our partner in Kathmandu, whom we've worked with for the past 18 months to teach Born2Fly all over Nepal. Sadly they lost one staff member.
They were able to rescue children from under a demolished building and they've organized a relief truck going to remote villages today, with another team leaving tomorrow.
Anti-trafficking training is on hold, of course, but they and many others are keeping a watchful eye for traffickers who view the earthquake as an unexpected boon to their audacious enterprise.
The audacity of traffickers
You know that audacious is my favorite word. This is the time to be praying audacious prayers of protection for innocent Nepali children.
I always say, if child traffickers are a 10 on the audacious scale, we have to be a 11 to stop them.
This is the time to be an 11.