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Human Trafficking

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The Senhoa Foundation -

Human Trafficking:

Some 200 years have passed since the abolition of the transatlantic slave trade, yet slavery has still not ended. It has, instead, evolved and exists today under a different guise – that of human trafficking. Each year, thousands of people are trafficked across borders or internally, and exploited for cheap labor or sexual services.

Human trafficking is a human rights violation. It is a crime against the dignity and integrity of an individual. It is the shameful illicit trading of human beings as commodities. It is “modern-day slavery” with more slaves at work today than there has ever been at any point in history.

Human trafficking is the third most lucrative and fastest growing criminal activity in the world, after arms and drugs.

Approximately 2.5 million people are trafficked every year. They are recruited or transferred through some form of coercion or deception and exploited, mainly for forced labor or sexual exploitation.

The market value of human trafficking is approximately $32 billion per year.

This is a global problem. No country is spared. About three out of every 1,000 persons worldwide are trafficked at any given point in time. Women and children are the primary targets, but men are also trafficked.

Forced labor claims 20.9 million victims, of which 18.7 million (90%) are exploited in the private economy.


Human Trafficking Facts:


  • Globally, the average cost of a slave is $90.
  • Trafficking primarily involves exploitation which comes in many forms, including:
    • Forcing victims into prostitution
    • Subjecting victims to slavery or involuntary servitude
    • Compelling victims to commit sex acts for the purpose of creating pornography
    • Misleading victims into debt bondage
  • According to some estimates, approximately 80% of trafficking involves sexual exploitation, and 19% involves labor exploitation.
  • There are approximately 20 to 30 million slaves in the world today.
  • According to the U.S. State Department, 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked across international borders every year. More than 70 percent are female and half are children.
  • The average age a teen enters the sex trade in the U.S. is 12 to 14-year-old. Many victims are runaway girls who were sexually abused as children.
  • California harbors 3 of the FBI’s 13 highest child sex trafficking areas on the nation: Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego.
  • The National Human Trafficking Hotline receives more calls from Texas than any other state in the US. 15 percent of those calls are from the Dallas- Fort Worth area.
  • Between 14,500 and 17,500 people are trafficked into the U.S. each year.
  • Human trafficking is the third largest international crime industry (behind illegal drugs and arms trafficking).
    • It reportedly generates a profit of $32 billion every year. Of that number, $15.5 billion is made in industrialized countries.
  • The International Labour Organization estimates that women and girls represent the largest share of forced labor victims with 11.4 million trafficked victims (55 percent) compared to 9.5 million (45 percent) men.


The Good News On The Progress Of Human Trafficking Prevention:

Policy-makers have put human trafficking on center stage today at a High Level Meeting of the General Assembly chaired by the President of the GA Vuk Jeremić and in the presence of the Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The event was attended by 85 states, UNODC Goodwill Ambassador to Combat Trafficking in Persons, Mira Sorvino, as well as representatives from civil society.



*information pulled from and