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There are an estimated 31,000 people living in condition of modern slavery in Israel (GSI 2018). Women from Eastern Europe, China and Ghana, as well as Eritream men and women are subjected to sex trafficking in Israel. People are often lured through the promise of seemingly legitimate jobs, only to be subjected to commercial sexual exploitation upon arrival. 

HA was living in Uzbekistan when her husband stopped bringing food for her and her baby. Thinking she would be undertaking cleaning work, HA accepted a job in Israel, however upon arrival she was sold into prostitution.

We had a baby this year, he’s now seven months old. I didn’t work, I just took care of the baby. My husband would bring us food once a week. When he stopped coming, I didn’t have anything to eat. My milk for nursing had dried up and my baby was hungry. I was in despair. My sister told me that there are people who arrange cleaning work and that I would earn $1000 a month. I thought that with a salary like that, within six months I’d be set for a few years. If I had known that I was to be sold into prostitution in Israel, I would have preferred to die of starvation with my baby.

Narrative provided by ATZUM – Justice Works