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Exploitation Creep and the Unmaking of Human Trafficking Law

American Journal of International Law, volume 108, number 4, page 609 (2014).

American University, WCL Research Paper No. 2014-49

Posted: 25 Aug 2013 Last revised: 2 May 2015

Janie A. Chuang

American University - Washington College of Law

Date Written: August 24, 2013

Abstract

The U.S. government has been promoting a greatly expanded legal definition and policy understanding of the problem of human trafficking. Through doctrinal and discursive conflation, it has recast (1) forced labor as trafficking, and (2) trafficking as “slavery.” The aggregate effect of these moves is a doctrinally problematic “exploitation creep” that creates two possible trajectories for the anti-trafficking movement. The first favors crime-control-focused approaches that seek ex post perpetrator accountability and victim protection. The second — favored here — targets structural vulnerability to trafficking through strengthened labor frameworks, providing long-overdue substance to States’ obligations to prevent trafficking under international law.

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Suggested Citation

Chuang, Janie A., Exploitation Creep and the Unmaking of Human Trafficking Law (August 24, 2013). American Journal of International Law, volume 108, number 4, page 609 (2014).; American University, WCL Research Paper No. 2014-49. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2315513 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2315513

Janie A. Chuang (Contact Author)

American University - Washington College of Law ( email )

4300 Nebraska Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States

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