Can Willing Migrant Sex Workers be Real Victims of Human Trafficking? A WPR Analysis of the Australian Modern Slavery Act Inquiry Report.


  • Udesha Chandrasena


Using Bacchi’s (2009) What’s a Problem Represented to be? (WPR) methodology, this paper analyses the Hidden in Plain Sight: An Inquiry into Establishing a Modern Slavery Act in Australia Report to examine the deep-seated assumptions, historical ways of thinking, and the silences used to support the contemporary construction of the problem of human trafficking in the Australian sex industry. This paper will also focus on how the Report understands migrant sex workers and their association with trafficking. In doing so, the aim is to destabilise the taken for granted knowledges and truths presented in the Report. Finally, the paper will provide alternative ways of understanding migrant sex workers and trafficking in the sex industry that may broaden all victims’ access to Australia’s human trafficking response, irrespective of the industry they are located in.