F.Y.I. (For Your Information)

11 Facts About Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is a crime that forcefully exploits women, men, and children. According to the United Nations, human trafficking affects every country in the world, but it’s not talked about enough. So we’re talking about it. Read on to learn more about human trafficking, and find support resources and ways you can take action at the Polaris Project, Love146, and Free the Slaves.

Contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline to connect with services and support for human trafficking survivors, or to report a tip: call 1-888-373-7888, text 233733, or chat online.

  1. Trafficking involves transporting someone into a situation of exploitation. This can include forced labor, marriage, prostitution, and organ removal. This kind of exploitation is known by a few different names — “human trafficking,” “trafficking of persons,” and “modern slavery” are the ones accepted by the US Department of State. [1]
  2. It’s estimated that internationally there are between 20 million and 40 million people in modern slavery today. Assessing the full scope of human trafficking is difficult because so cases so often go undetected, something the United Nations refers to as “the hidden figure of crime.”[2]
  3. Estimates suggest that, internationally, only about .04% survivors of human trafficking cases are identified, meaning that the vast majority of cases of human trafficking go undetected. [3]
  4. Human trafficking earns global profits of roughly $150 billion a year for traffickers, $99 billion of which comes from commercial sexual exploitation.[4]
  5. Globally, an estimated 71% of enslaved people are women and girls, while men and boys account for 29%.[5]
  6. Estimates suggest that about 50,000 people are trafficked into the US each year, most often from Mexico and the Philippines. [6]
  7. In 2018, over half (51.6%) of the criminal human trafficking cases active in the US were sex trafficking cases involving only children.[7]
  8. Reports indicate that a large number of child sex trafficking survivors in the US were at one time in the foster care system. [8]
  9. Advocates report a growing trend of traffickers using online social media platforms to recruit and advertise targets of human trafficking.[9]
  10. The average age a teen enters the sex trade in the US is 12 to 14 years old. Many victims are runaway girls who were sexually abused as children.[10]
  11. In 2018, The National Human Trafficking Hotline received more calls from California than any other state in the US, followed by Texas and Florida, respectively. (To contact the Human Trafficking Hotline: call 1-888-373-7888, text 233733, or chat online.)[11]

Are Sex Traffickers Leaving Zip Ties on Cars, Mailboxes of Potential Victims?

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