A report titled Children Living and Working in the Streets reveals shocking findings showing that the number of sex workers is going up in Arusha and Iringa.
What is more worrying is the fact that children are among those joining this “business” as service providers.
The report resulted from a study that covered a total of 10,595 girls, out of whom 6,393 are underage.
Factors pointed out as leading to this trend include family breakups, poverty, unemployment, moral decay in society and lack of proper sex and reproductive health education among the youth.
The situation is even more worrisome as most of the people procuring this service are adults – people who should know what is good and what is bad in moral terms. This signifies the moral dilemma into which our society has been catapulted.
It is time measures were taken to reverse this trend in Tanzania. This is not only because it fuels the spread of HIV and sexually transmitted diseases, but because it is also dehumanising and causes much misery and suffering among families and society at large, among others.
Government and religious leaders should team up and find a lasting solution to this problem. We could start by ensuring the provision of education to all children so that they are equipped with the requisite skills to enable them to earn a decent living.