"If I Don't Go Ahead With It, I'll Be Dead:" Forced Abortion and Human Trafficking Go Hand in Hand

David C. Reardon
April 15, 2016
Reproduced with Permission
Elliot Insitute

A woman who was a victim of human trafficking spoke out about being forced to abort in a UK study of people who survived trafficking.

From the Independent:

"If I don't go ahead with it, I'll be dead."

With those chilling words, a victim of human trafficking explained to a nurse in a British hospital why she could not seek help and had to go ahead with an abortion arranged for her by a criminal gang.

The young woman later managed to escape life as a domestic slave in the UK and spoke to researchers carrying out one of the largest ever studies into the health of trafficking survivors.

The findings of the report, commissioned by the Department of Health, were stark: nearly 80 percent of the women were still suffering from post-traumatic stress, severe depression or anxiety an average of 16 months after they were freed.

And while 30 percent of the women were tricked or coerced to work as prostitutes - with the remaining 70 percent used as forced labour or domestic servants - a total of 66 per cent had been raped.

The study of 150 people who had survived being trafficked found that 29 percent of women reported that they had one or more pregnancies while trafficked and 12 women reported having abortions during that time.