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Public Policy and Administration


Mark Gordon


Human trafficking crime is rising globally at an alarming rate, and Vietnam is one of the nations with the highest prevalence of trafficking female victims for forced sex services and forced marriages. This study explored human trafficking awareness in remote communities of central Vietnam and the factors for young girls dropping out of school for work at an early age. The study also investigated the link between gender inequality and the child labor problem in these communities. There is no extant empirical research pertaining to human trafficking awareness in the remote communities of central Vietnam. This research fills this gap and highlights the importance of awareness strategies to combat human trafficking. Gender inequality, human motivation theory, vulnerability, and victimology provided theoretical constructs to explain the findings of this research study. The data collection process was conducted through semistructured face-to-face interviews with 19 villagers, mothers of the child labor victims, teachers, human services workers, members of the Vietnam Women's Union, and village leaders in the research sites. The coding technique was used for the data analysis process. Participants had (a) little knowledge about human trafficking crime; (b) no awareness of the ramifications; and (c) the effects of a culture of gender inequality on the lives of people in the remote communities of central Vietnam. Findings of this study have implications for assisting policy makers and law enforcement officials and offer guidance that may help to protect people in the communities and bring offenders to justice. The findings also encourage the Vietnamese government to bridge the gender inequality divide so that young girls in these remote communities can achieve an equal voice and equal justice that they deserve.