Human Trafficking – What is it?
It’s a phrase we are hearing more and more about on the news, internet, social media and other groups we may be involved with. By definition, human trafficking is “the action or practice of illegally transporting people from one country or area to another, typically for the purpose of forced labor or sexual exploitation.” It is, in fact, modern day slavery. Most often we hear of human trafficking used in terms of sexual exploitation (sex trafficking) in which someone abducts or coerces women or young girls (and even men or boys) into service and force them to perform sexual acts for payment to the pimp (the person controlling the workers). Human trafficking is different from prostitution which is payment to the woman directly for performing the sexual service as an “occupational” income. Sometimes this can result in pregnancy and forced abortion if a victim becomes pregnant but the woman is required to keep working.
Human trafficking also includes labor trafficking in which individuals are forced into slavery like work to businesses, farms, domestic work, child labor and begging/pedaling. This is taking advantage of the individual worker by using physical abuse, coercion, threats, hiding/destroying important papers, refusing to pay wages, or takes advantage of immigration status.
Both labor trafficking and sex trafficking are illegal in the United States and globally because many individuals are taken from other countries to work in other parts of the world. It is a global issue. In the United States, the greatest concentration is in Texas, Florida, California and New York, but human trafficking has crept into many parts of the country. There are countless organizations being created to combat this modern day crisis. This kind of slavery needs to be abolished because every life is priceless.
Here are some resources for Human Trafficking in America:
Human Trafficking Hotline – (888) 373-7888