Vulnerable teens exploited for drugs

June 20, 2024 6:34 am

[File Photo]

The Ministry of Women and Children reports a disturbing increase in young people engaging in prostitution to obtain drugs.

According to the Ministry, this issue has been prevalent, however, there has been a significant post-pandemic increase.

The Ministry is calling for a whole-of-society approach to tackle the issue.

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Assistant Minister Sashi Kiran shares the Ministry’s findings on this matter.

“But post-pandemic, we had women come and share with us how they were surviving the pandemic through sex work. And we are being told more and more that with the drug trade around, young girls and boys are used in sex trafficking to obtain drugs.”

She adds that there is a need for increased efforts and collaboration among agencies in combating the deep-rooted issues.

“Sadly, over the years, while the problem persisted, there has not been enough attention given and not enough solutions provided. So, while many agencies are currently working on it, I have noticed significant movement in the last year or so.”

The Ministry for Women and Children highlights the urgency for more comprehensive support, addressing education, economic needs, and social problems within affected families.