Moral and Legal Obligations of the State to Victims of Sex Trafficking: Vulnerability and Beyond
Keele University, School of Law
July 13, 2010
VULNERABLE SUBJECTIVITIES: MOBILITY, NORMATIVE SPACES, AND THE FEMALE LEGAL SUBJECT, S. FitzGerald, ed., Routledge, Forthcoming
This chapter examines the possible grounds on which the state of destination could be under an obligation to assist victims of trafficking, and the scope of such obligation. In particular, I will evaluate the relative importance of the concept of vulnerability in interrogating such a ground, in comparison to other grounds. After distinguishing between legal and moral obligations the chapter identifies, in the context of trafficking, four main grounds on which to recognise the state’s obligation to assist victims: (1) fault by the state in the way it dealt with victims; (2) fairness - the fact that the state's acts and omissions (even if not faulty) harmed victims and benefited the state and its residents; (3) the state's failure (even if not faulty) to protect the victim from a serious violation of her rights by a third party within its jurisdiction - such obligation could be linked with a social contract theory; and (4) welfare state rationale - the obligation to meet basic needs and assist the vulnerable. These grounds are distinguished from an obligation to make restitution to victims of any direct benefit received by the state at victims’ expense.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 37
Keywords: Compensation, Restitution, Victims Of Trafficking, Moral Obligations, State Liability
JEL Classification: K13Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 13, 2010
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