Category Archives: The Human Condition

Ethical Shopping

Author and journalist Stephanie Hepburn has founded Good Cloth, an ethical online clothing shop, as her way to make change in the garment industry and spread awareness on the topic of labor exploitation in a positive way. The shop includes designers who equally care about aesthetics, ethical sourcing and supply chain transparency.

Displacement of Syrians: implications for a human trafficking crisis

The New York Times reported in November that with no end in sight to the Syrian conflict and large parts of the nation destroyed, the United Nations, governments and international humanitarian organizations are calling Syria the most challenging refugee crisis in a generation. If accurate, the implications are grave for the human trafficking of this displaced population of 2.4 million and growing.

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photo by: FreedomHouse

Sporting Events and Human Trafficking (It’s Not Just For Sex, People)

In preparation for the Winter Olympics this month and the Paralympic Games in March, Russia has spent an estimated (U.S.) $51 billion transforming the coastal town of Sochi and the neighboring Caucasus Mountains. Construction has included an Olympic stadium, a village for athletes, arenas, visitor accommodation, a media center, modern transportation and telecommuting systems, and hotels. These projects required tens of thousands of workers, including 16,000 migrant workers from Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Serbia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine. These low-wage workers often earned (U.S.) $1.80 to $2.60 an hour performing odd jobs or working as carpenters, welders or steel fitters. Some employers didn’t pay full wages or didn’t pay workers at all. Continue reading Sporting Events and Human Trafficking (It’s Not Just For Sex, People)

Human Trafficking and Labor Loopholes. Local Author and Columnist Stephanie Hepburn Talks Human Traffic. Atlantis Now.

It has been nearly four years since I began my book research on human trafficking. Not only does that point to how long it apparently takes me to write a book but it also illustrates the complicated nature that is human trafficking.

No matter the nation – first, second, or third world – human trafficking exists. Yet the common thread between nations is the ostrich-like belief that the situation must be worse elsewhere – and that what trafficking does exist in their nation must exclusively involve foreigners…Human Trafficking and Labor Loopholes. Pages 12 & 13.

While there is no denying that foreigners are involved in each nation’s trafficking scenario (migrants are one of the most vulnerable populations globally), internal trafficking within a nation occurs too. 

Continue reading Human Trafficking and Labor Loopholes. Local Author and Columnist Stephanie Hepburn Talks Human Traffic. Atlantis Now.

Labor Conditions in New Orleans. Americas Quarterly, Stephanie Hepburn

Under the thick humid blanket of a New Orleans summer day, local and migrant workers collect at gas stations on the avenues of Carrollton and Elysian Fields. Some hold hard hats and eagerly look out onto the road. Some chat with one another—a more enjoyable way to pass the time while they wait, wait and wait in the hopes that a subcontractor will drive by and offer employment. Some days are good, but many are not. Americas Quarterly: Labor Conditions in New Orleans