New Resource Critiquing Trafficking Narratives During the London Olympics 2012

The Central America Women's Network (CAWN) commisioned a report entited: "Exploitation and Trafficking of Women: Critiquing narratives during the London Olympics 2012" to inform its work around the role of civil society and the media in shaping public understanding of different forms of exploitation experienced by women, in particular migrant women, in the context of major sporting events. It is based on an extensive study of press coverage of the issues of trafficking and exploitation of women during the London Olympics 2012 and examines critically the range of narratives underlying the approach to these issues in the print media. In addition, the report includes in-depth analysis of the campaigns mounted by five civil society organisations (CSOs) and compares the different approaches and strategies applied in each case, assessing the reasons for the varying degrees of success of each, respectively. An important aim of the study was to identify lessons and draw up recommendations based on the experience of the London Olympics that can be applied to other forthcoming major sporting events.

The report deals with the various forms of exploitation experienced by migrant women in the labour market and how legislation designed to police immigration and prevent trafficking often fails to protect these vulnerable women. The report also examines the role of the media in objectifying migrant women through their often negative, stereotypical portrayals. In addition, it provides an overview of some of the narratives (a sex work issue, a labour issue, a migration issue, a criminal networks issue, a global economic justice issue, a gender issue, an ethnic/racial discrimination issue - all of which have been identified by CAWN) within civil society that inform debates around trafficking and exploitation of women, and discusses ways in which their messages can be amplified and integrated to reflect a global justice approach. This report aims to be of use to stakeholders in the UK and other countries where major sporting events are to take place, in particular, the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014, the 2014 World Cup in Rio and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

You can view and download the report here.