Nigeria's Campaign to End Human Trafficking
Unmaking Migrants engages critical questions about preventing trafficking by preventing migration through a study of a shelter for trafficking victims in Lagos, Nigeria.
Over the past fifteen years, antitrafficking personnel have stopped thousands of women from traveling out of Nigeria and instead sent them to the federal counter-trafficking agency for investigation, protection, and rehabilitation. Government officials defend this form of intervention as preemptive, having intercepted the women before any abuses take place. Yet many of the women protest their detention, insist they were not being trafficked, and demand to be released.
As Stacey Vanderhurst argues, migration can be a freely made choice. Unmaking Migrants shows the moments leading up to the migration choice, and it shows how well-intentioned efforts to help women considering these paths often don't address their real needs at all.