• Sweden edition
 
Swedes enlist Canadian's novel in sex slavery fight

Swedes enlist Canadian's novel in sex slavery fight

Published: 17 Oct 2012 14:44 GMT+02:00
Updated: 17 Oct 2012 14:44 GMT+02:00

When Canadian author Réal Laplaine saw photos of a six-year-old girl in Calcutta taking care of her one-year-old brother, he was shocked.

The result was a novel, "See Me Not", which tells the fictional story of a 12-year-old girl sold into sexual slavery at the age of eight. An American student's chance meeting with the girl prompts him to try to save her.

Having recently moved to Gothenburg, western Sweden, Laplaine was put in touch with a Swedish pressure group, Real Stars, which uses art to help raise awareness about sex trafficking.

Laplaine found himself drawn to Real Stars' ongoing "Fair Sex" campaign for a “trafficking-free Europe”.

According to the group, "Fair Sex" is defined as “sex on equal terms and with mutual respect in all situations". The group adds: "sex trafficking is the opposite of fair sex."

Laplaine explains:

“One of the reasons I hooked up with Real Stars is because of their work within the EU,” the author tells The Local.

According to Laplaine, the market for sex trafficking "runs in the billions of dollars", with countries in central and eastern Europe playing an increasingly prominent role.

Malin Roux, who helped found Real Stars in 2010, explains part of the reason for the recent boom in trafficking in Europe:

“After the fall of the Berlin Wall the growth in trafficking of girls from eastern countries has been enormous," she says.

"Europe has the highest level of sex slaves per capita in the world."

According to statistics from the European Union, there was a nearly 10-percent increase in the number of registered trafficking victims sold for sexual exploitation between 2008 and 2010.

“If more European countries established laws against the sex trade, sex trafficking would plummet all over the continent," Roux explains.

"Imagine all the positive effects such an event would cause, for society and individuals alike.”

And with the EU's fifth annual Anti-Trafficking Day taking place on Thursday, Real Stars enlisted Laplaine to participate in an event at Stockholm’s Modern Art Museum (Moderna Muséet) to raise awareness in Sweden of the issue.

“We organized the Anti-Trafficking Day event because we think the issue does not receive enough attention," Roux tells The Local.

Laplaine's book will feature prominently at the event in the hope of reaching a larger audience.

According to Roux, "hope and positivity" are key words at the event.

To successfully combat sex trafficking, she explains, people must believe it's possible to bring traffickers to justice.

“We want to see different parts of society come together, to share and exchange ideas,” she says.

Roux hopes visitors leave thinking: “OK, I can do something about this.”

By attending, Laplaine hopes to promote "See Me Not" while at the same time boosting support for Real Stars.

Laplaine has agreed to donate part of the proceeds from the book to the group and hopes the partnership continues.

“I would like the book sales to go into the millions,” Laplaine says with a smile.

“If I can manage to sell a lot of books that will really help Real Stars’ campaign."

Sanne Schim van der Loeff

Follow The Local on Twitter

Related links:

Your comments about this article

02:43 October 29, 2012 by jimfromcanada
Good work Mr Laplaine
Today's headlines
National
Swedish airfares to get cheaper in 2015

Swedish airfares to get cheaper in 2015

Sweden is set to buck the European trend of rising air prices with fares expected to drop next year according to a new report. READ  

National
Swede's homemade submarine nets fortune
Eric Westerberg's homemade submarine Isabelle. Photo: PS.nu

Swede's homemade submarine nets fortune

A Swedish submarine enthusiast who spent over 3,500 hours making his own vessel has sold his prized possession for 705,000 kronor ($98,500) in an online auction. READ  

National
Cops reported for making 'Roma' comment

Cops reported for making 'Roma' comment

Police in northern Sweden have been reported to the Equality Ombudsman for describing a wanted suspect as having a "Roma appearance." READ  

Donald Duck and Zlatan get Swedish votes
A political career for Zlatan? Some fans seem to want to see that. Photo: Peter Dejong/TT

Donald Duck and Zlatan get Swedish votes

The Bilderberg Group, the Satanic Initiative and Adolf Hitler all received votes in Sweden’s general election, according to a list released by the country’s electoral authority. READ  

Sport
Stockholm fails bid to host Euro 2020 games
The Swedish team in action. Photo: TT

Stockholm fails bid to host Euro 2020 games

Sweden's capital has missed out on a chance to host any Euro 2020 games, with Copenhagen the only Scandinavian city among the thirteen winning locations. READ  

Vicar: God rejects fans of women priests
Antje Jackelén, Archbishop of Uppsala, is the first woman to head the Swedish church. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Vicar: God rejects fans of women priests

A Swedish priest has been fired after telling his congregation that people who support female priests would be rejected by God - despite the fact that his own church is led by a woman. READ  

Analysis
Women set to dominate top post-election jobs
Margot Wallström (right) could become Stefan Löfven's new Minister of Foreign Affairs. Photo: TT

Women set to dominate top post-election jobs

Sweden could soon get a female Foreign Minister, Fredrik Reinfeldt's ousted Moderate Party is preparing for its first woman leader and the grandmother of actor Hugh Grant's son is being tipped as Parliament's next Speaker. READ  

National
Sweden protests over Russian plane incursions
A Gripen plane was scrambled to see off the Russian planes. Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Sweden protests over Russian plane incursions

UPDATED: Sweden has summoned the Russian Ambassador for a dressing down after two Russian planes violated Swedish airspace last week. READ  

Elections 2014
'Good prospects' for Alliance co-operation

'Good prospects' for Alliance co-operation

UPDATED: Social Democrat leader Stefan Löfven says he is positive that his party can co-operate with the former governing Alliance on some issues. READ  

Lifestyle
Introducing...Astrid Lindgren
Pippi Longstocking comes to live at the Astrid Lindgren theme park. Photo: TT

Introducing...Astrid Lindgren

The creator of Pippi Longstocking, Astrid Lindgren, is the most translated author from Sweden, and has filled children's imaginations since the 1940s. The Local finds out why her work has become a timeless classic. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
The 'black gold' of Sweden's west coast.
National
West Sweden prepares for the 2014 lobster premiere
Society
What's on in Sweden
Politics
How Sweden Democrats went mainstream
Politics
Scandinavia and Scotland: closer links?
Gallery
Property of the week - Eskilstuna
Blog updates

20 September

How a Frog Can Save the Environment (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"What we do we imagine when we think of children enjoying nature? Perhaps it’s fishing, marveling at lightning bugs on a muggy July day or blowing on the wispy petals of a dandelion to make a special wish. But perhaps most iconic of the playful innocence in childhood is hopping after and trying to catch..." READ »

 

19 September

Editor’s blog (The Local Sweden) »

"Happy Friday readers! It sure has been a exciting week in Sweden, where we’re set to get a new Prime Minister after Fredrik Reinfeldt stepped down following Sunday’s elections. The Local blogged live from the key political gatherings across Stockholm. Why not re-visit the action by taking a look at our photos, tweets, videos and analysis? Since the..." READ »

 
 
 
Sponsored Article
How to start a business in Stockholm
Society
How I became a surf blogger when I moved to Sweden
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Society
Why is Stockholm's Södermalm so cool?
Gallery
People-watching: September 11th
Gallery
People-watching: September 13th
Politics
Five possible election outcomes
Politics
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Politics
Sweden elections: Who's who?
Gallery
Property of the week - Hornstull, Stockholm
Analysis
Five differences between the UK and Sweden
Welshman Jonny Luck is now a chef in Sweden
Society
How I opened my own restaurant in Sweden's Malmö
Sponsored Article
Stockholm tech fest: relive the magic
Gallery
People-watching September 8th
Photo: TT
Politics
Feminists fight for first seats
Politics
Immigration cut push from Sweden Democrats
Sheryl Sandberg says women have "low expectations"
Tech
Facebook exec talks women's limits in Swedish business
Politics
Left Party calls for justice and equality
Politics
Green Party wants 'better world' for kids
Lifestyle
The five best Swedish songs of the month
Sponsored Article
Introducing… Insurance in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Graduates: Insure your income in Sweden with AEA
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

857
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN