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Human trafficking is defined by the U. S. Trafficking Victims Protection Act as:
The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.
$32 Billion: The total market value of illicit human trafficking is estimated to be in excess of $32 billion
27 Million: Currently 27 million men, women and children are being held as slaves—more today than in any other time in history
80% Women & Girls: Women and girls comprise at least 80% of the world’s trafficking victims, and up to 50% are minors. They are exploited in fields and brothels, in homes and conflicts, and in factories and fisheries. More women are being pushed out of developing countries due to economic, familial, and societal pressures – becoming ever more vulnerable to modern slavery.
Women continue to be enslaved in commercial sex around the world. They are often arrested for participating in a crime that victimizes them when they should instead be provided with services and benefit from a well-trained police force implementing proven and compassionate victim identification measures.
Women continue to toil in sweatshop factories without food or break, sewing garments, peeling shrimp, and weaving carpets under threat of violence. Bonded by debt and force, they pick cotton, mine conflict minerals, and harvest rice alongside their children. They toil in diplomatic households and suburban residences as domestic workers often without anyone knowing they are there let alone being abused.
2 Million: According to UNICEF, as many as two million children are subjected to prostitution in the global commercial sex trade. Sex trafficking has devastating consequences for minors, including long-lasting physical and psychological trauma, disease (including HIV/AIDS), drug addiction, unwanted pregnancy, malnutrition, social ostracism, and possible death.
(Sources: Trafficking In Persons Report 2010, Kevin Bales, Disposable People, U.S. State Dept)
“Like abusers, traffickers are skilled manipulators, using isolation and intimidation, minimizing and denying they’re doing anything wrong. But they are. And we know it.”
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GREAT ANTI-TRAFFICKING ORGANIZATIONS
Here are some great organizations fighting to abolish modern day slavery, increase awareness, and help victims:
Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn
The Road of Lost Innocence by Somaly Mam
Terrify No More: Young Girls Held Captive and the Daring Undercover Operation to Win Their Freedom by Gary A. Haugen and Gregg Hunter
Ending Slavery: How We Free Today’s Slaves by Kevin Bales
Free the Children by Craig Kielburger
Slave Hunter by Aaron Cohen and Christine Buckley
Not For Sale by David B. Bastone
The Natashas: Inside the New Global Sex Trade by Victor Malarek
Modern Slavery: The Secret World of 27 Million People by Zoe Trodd, Kevin Bales, Alex Kent Williamson
The Slave Next Door: Human Trafficking and Slavery in America Today by Kevin Bales
Disposable People by Kevin Bales
Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery by Siddharth Kara
Enslaved: True Stories of Modern Day Slavery by Sage Jesse, Liora Kasten and Gloria Steinem
War Child by Emmanual Jal