Re: Women's groups demand action on forced marriages

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Sue Metzenrath (
Wed, 12 Aug 1998 13:40:41 +1000

> From:
> To: Multiple recipients of list <stop-traffic@SOLAR.RTD.UTK.EDU>
> Subject: Re: Women's groups demand action on forced marriages
> Date: Wednesday, 5 August 1998 08:04
> Dear Scarlet: There appears to be a need in this discussion to
> between "forced" prostitution and voluntary prostitution; between
> marriage and voluntary marriage. Certainly it makes a difference if the
> person involved is, or feels herself to be, enslaved. However, there are
> instances in which the nature of the situation is such that, while the
> enters the scene on a voluntary basis, the end result is less than a
> of equality and control.

This is why if the issue of sex work is seen as a labour one, it
facilitates a discussion about working conditions rather than what one
might ideologically or moraly think about sex work itself. By including
sex work in discussions of labour exploitation issues, it makes it no
different to other work places where people are exploited. I would say
that the shift towards individual workplace agreements, which is a
development in Australia gives workers (irrespective of industry) less say
and control over their workplace. Interesting how we don't refer to these
people as slaves.

 One can become a slave without even realizing it has
> happened to them. One can accommodate to slavery in what appears to be
> own self-interest if that is the only choice open to them. Many so-called
> "voluntary" choices are the result of coercion. Is a coerced choice a
> voluntary one?

Clearly not, but many sex workers who have been coersed into sex work (eg
India, personal communication) decide that they enjoy the work and would
prefer to do this as opposed to other work. I think this is what really
becomes problematic in the simple discourse which is whether one has been
forced or not. How can the legal system deal with this issue?? And
shouldn't we be listening and supporting the needs of those workers
ultimately, not necessary what we may think intelectually?? It's a tough

  There were black slaves in the US one time who would have told
> you that they chose, indeed preferred, their indenture to the freedom
> would have cast them into an insecure, even hostile, world. Something to
> think about.... GBDiaspora
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From: Jyothi Kanics---Global Survival Network <>
Subject: news:Peruvian man sentenced in marriage brokering ring

Peruvian man sentenced in marriage brokering ring
August 6, 1998

SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (AP) - A Peruvian man will spend six months in jail for
arranging fake marriages between illegal aliens and American citizens.

Miguel Angel Jaime, 28, was sentenced Wednesday for his part in an illegal
marriage brokering scam that ran out of Schenectady from October 1996 to
April 1997.

Miguel's sister, Luz Jaime, and two other relatives have already been
convicted for conspiracy and felony marriage fraud. Luz Jaime, 33, was
reportedly the mastermind of the operation.

Police say the Jaimes charged Peruvian aliens up to $7,000 to match them
with Schenectady residents in fake marriages. Once married, the illegal
aliens could apply for a green card enabling them to stay in the country.

The Jaimes then paid the Schenectady residents between $1,000 to $2,000 for
their part in the scam. Authorities say the ring operators had the most
success recruiting people in the poor neighborhood of Hamilton Hill.

Miguel Jaime's conviction was the last in the crackdown, said Gary Hale,
Immigration and Naturalization Service agent in Albany. Thirty-five illegal
aliens from Peru have been arrested and deported since the investigation
began, he said.

The Schenectady citizens involved in the fake marriages have not been
charged. Authorities say they have cooperated with the federal investigation.

``The U.S. Attorney's Office has aggressively prosecuted those involved in
arranged marriages and wants to send a signal that this type of fraud will
not be tolerated in the Capital Region (of New York),'' Hale said.

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