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Human trafficking and media myths: federal funding, communication strategies, and Canadian anti-trafficking programs

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journal contribution
posted on 21.05.2021, 12:14 by Ann De Shalit, Robert Heynen, Emily van der Meulen
This article looks at debates over human trafficking by considering the linkages between federal funding, media myths, and non-governmental organization (NGO) activities and by examining the textual and visual content of NGO websites. By highlighting the ways in which NGOs echo government communication strategies, we argue that these debates are constrained not only by the current political terrain, but also by an ingrained and problematic anti-trafficking discourse. Further, we interrogate the language and emotive appeals of NGOs that receive federal funding for anti-trafficking programming through the exploration of counter-discourses developed by both scholars and independent organizations that are critical of dominant narratives and policies. We conclude by suggesting that alternative narratives and media strategies are needed for the development of more nuanced and authentic conceptions of labour, migration, and sex work

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