This week’s videos focus on the scourge of human trafficking, which is “the act of recruiting, harboring, transporting, providing, or obtaining a person for compelled labor or commercial sex acts through the use of force, fraud, or coercion” (Source: U.S. Department of State).
While hard and fast numbers are difficult to come by, due mainly to the secrecy involved in criminal enterprises like these, here are some stats:
- Between 20-30 million people are forced to work as slaves worldwide
- Hundreds of thousands of people are trafficked across international borders each year to work as forced laborers or in the sex trade
- Up to 50,000 individuals are trafficked into the U.S. each year (National Institute of Justice – PDF)
- Approximately 100,000 children are involved in sex trafficking in the U.S. each year
- Approximately 250,000 kids are at risk for entering the sex trade in the U.S. each year
- Human trafficking generates over 32 billion dollars in illicit funds for criminal individuals and organizations annually
In other words, modern day slavery is alive and well around the world.
Background on human trafficking
Despite the enormous challenges involved, governments and individuals are taking action to combat all forms of human trafficking. One innovative organization that’s battling domestic sex trafficking in the U.S. is Truckers Against Trafficking. According to their website, this organization
recognizes that members of the trucking industry and individual truckers are invaluable in the fight against [human trafficking]. As the eyes and ears of our nation’s highways, you are in a unique position to make a difference and close loopholes to traffickers who seek to exploit our transportation system for their personal gain. This site has been created to inform truckers and other travelers of the basic issues involved in human trafficking and a summary of ways you can help. We invite you to travel through this website and learn how you can join this worthy cause and save lives.
Their educational mission is carried out in part through the below video, which describes the extent of the trafficking problem and how truckers can help identify individuals who are recruiting victims or otherwise engaging in behavior related to human trafficking.
Truckers Against Trafficking training video
Have a safe weekend.