Child Sex Trafficking Is Not a Conspiracy
Child sex trafficking is not a consipiracy. Period.
No matter where you stand politically, no matter what your beliefs are, child sex trafficking is very real and very scary. It’s happening in your city, in your neighborhood and at your local mall.
I first learned about child sex trafficking when I was a freshman in college. I had some amazing professors and ended up minoring in Women’s Studies due to my passion for raising awareness on this topic.
If you are just learning about child sex trafficking, I wanted to create a post with resources, how you can help and facts you need to know.
There’s currently a lot going on in the news- WayFair, Ghislene Maxwell’s arrest, etc. I would encourage you to do your own research and draw your own conclusions- both with these stories and with everything going on.
What is child sex traffcking?
According to the US Department of Justice, child sex trafficking refers to the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of a minor for the purpose of a commercial sex act.
In addition to child sex trafficking, many women who are not minors, are also victims of sex trafficking.
Child sex trafficking may also be called human trafficking, trafficking, sex trafficking, etc. Often these terms are used interchangeably.
Facts About Child Sex Trafficking
- There are more people enslaved today than any other time in the history of the world- even when slavery was legal.
- There are 30 million slaves in the world. 10 million of those are children.
- Human trafficking generates over 100 billion dollars annually worldwide.
- 17,500 women and children are trafficked into the US every year.
- Americans are the number 1 producer and consumer of child pornography.
- On average, a trafficked child is victimized 5.4 times per day in the US.
- Every 30 seconds a child is sold.
- Estimates suggest that, internationally, only about .04% of survivors of human trafficking cases are identified. This means that the vast majority of cases of human trafficking go undetected.
- Reports indicate that a large number of child sex trafficking survivors in the US were at one time in the foster care system.
Resources To Learn More About Child Sex Trafficking
- Operation Underground Railroad
- Save The Children
- National Human Trafficking Hotline
- Malouf Foundation
- Polaris Project
- Global Alliance Against Traffic in Women
- Stop The Traffik
- Fair Girls
- Freedom Network
- Defend Innocence
Lucikly, there are many, many resources available about sex trafficking. These are just a few that I chose to highlight.
How You Can Help
Here are a few free ways that you can help.
Know the signs of sex trafficking
You can help by knowing the signs of sex trafficking and reporting something if you see it. Here are a few common signs of sex trafficking in children and women:
- Appearing malnourished
- Showing signs of physical injuries and abuse
- Avoiding eye contact, social interaction, and authority figures/law enforcement
- Seeming to adhere to scripted or rehearsed responses in social interaction
- Lacking official identification documents
- Appearing destitute/lacking personal possessions
- Living at place of employment
- Checking into hotels/motels with older males
- Poor physical or dental health
- Tattoos/ branding on the neck and/or lower back
- Security measures that appear to keep people inside an establishment – barbed wire inside of a fence, bars covering the insides of windows
- Not allowing people to go into public alone, or speak for themselves
These sex trafficking signs are adapted from information provided by the Polaris Project and its National Human Trafficking Resource Center and Innocents at Risk.
Help raise awareness
You can raise awareness about human trafficking by sharing information with your friends, family and on social media. It’s very possible that people in your life don’t know about sex trafficking, or believe that it is something that happens far away. Raise awareness by talking about it!
You don’t have to be an expert to raise awareness. Share a few things that you have learned! If you get questions that you can’t answer, feel free to share websites or resources.
Become a volunteer
You can volunteer at local events or shelters. Your time is valuable! There are many ways to find local volunteer opportunities. Here is one site to help you find opportunities close to home.
There are many other sites that may have opportunities as well. Feel free to do your own research and volunteer anywhere that you can.
How to report a suspected sex trafficking incident
If you see something unusual, here are some ways that you can take action.
National Human Trafficking Hotline
Phone number: 1-888-373-7888
The National Human Trafficking Hotline is a national, anti-trafficking hotline and resource center serving victims and survivors of human trafficking and the anti-trafficking community in the United States. Their toll-free line is answered live 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
National Center for Missing & Exploited Children
Phone number: 1-800-843-5678
As the nation’s clearinghouse and comprehensive reporting center for all issues related to the prevention of and recovery from child victimization, NCMEC leads the fight against abduction, abuse, and exploitation – because every child deserves a safe childhood
This is real and this is happening closer than you think. This is not easy information to digest- but it’s crucial. Sex trafficking is NOT a conspiracy theory. Take time to educate yourself and share this information with others.