There are many social issues that America is experiencing each day. Thousands of people are suffering from these problems, and the number continues to increase each day. One of these issues is human trafficking. Human trafficking is a terrible problem that needs to be stopped, and yet it continues to take place in our world today. There are many causes of human trafficking. The main cause of human trafficking is traffickers. Traffickers lie to people and tell them that they will receive benefits for what they are expected to do. Most of the victims are young and naive, and they have no idea what they are getting themselves into.
Many people are affected by human trafficking. The biggest type that causes the most effect is sex trafficking. However, 600,000 to 800,000 people are trafficked yearly across international borders. 80% of them are females and young children. There is a huge amount of people being affected across the country even today. There are many different types of human trafficking. Each one is different, and each one has a different number of people affected by it. There are three main types: forced labor, sex trafficking, and debt bondage. Forced labor is when a person is forced to work against their will. Forced labor is related to slavery. Men are mostly affected by forced labor but it can affect women and children as well. It is especially prevalent is the agricultural and fishing industry, as well as mining, construction, and other businesses where there is hard and long work. Most of the forced labor is done outside in the cold and heat. Many of these victims are threatened by the traffickers and they are under rule by them. For this reason, they are unable to get much rest during the night, and if they are privileged to sleep it is mostly for only two to six hours a night, depending on the authority of the trafficker. (International)
Sex trafficking affects mostly women and young children. They are promised benefits and payment if they work for them, usually by performing sexual acts. The trafficker will sometimes take them to a house with men inside waiting, and they abuse the woman all night. Sex trafficking is the most common, and it is probably the worst type of human trafficking. Women are physically abused in this trafficking, and they often go nights with no rest. They are dirty, beaten, and malnourished. Women between the age of fourteen and sixteen are generally affected because they are too young and naïve to realize what is going on. Victims in sex trafficking are mostly used for drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence, delinquency, teenage pregnancy, and abortion. (CITATION) For this reason, spotting a woman being human trafficking is not difficult, but there are many women being affected right now, so we need to be aware that something could easily happen to us one day.
Debt bondage is when a person owes a debt to someone and is unable to pay if off. Rather than being placed into labor which the victims do not want, they are forced to work for the person in order to pay off the debt that they owe. Sometimes, they are forced to work with little or no pay at all. They have no control over their debt, so the traffickers usually raise the debt on purpose in order to keep the victims working for them. All the money the victims earn immediately goes towards the paying off of their debt. The victims are beaten and abused if they try to escape. Sometimes the debt will be passed down generations and children will suffer from this because their parents took a loan from someone decades ago. Men, women, and young children are all affected by debt bondage. Today, debt bondage is the closest form to modern slavery (anti-slavery).
Human trafficking has an important history. It started thousands of years ago around the globe, but it mainly was known as slavery. However, in the early 1400s, the Europeans started slave trading in Africa by transporting people from Africa to Portugal, using them as slaves. The British joined the slave trade in 1562. Throughout the 1600s, many countries joined the slave trade, including America. (Yong) Over time, it turned into human trafficking. Men were forced to work against their will, women were used for sexual acts under threatening, and children were ripped apart from their families. Since then, human trafficking has been in effect ever since.
It is important to be able to spot a trafficker that might cause danger to a person. There are many noticeable signs that can help in the identification of a human trafficker. “Traffickers promise a high-paying job, a loving relationship, or new and exciting opportunities” (Polaris, The Victims and Traffickers). Sometimes the traffickers kidnap the victims or abuse them in order to gain control over them. The traffickers find the victims’ vulnerable, in order to find dependency. (Polaris, The Victims and Traffickers) They promise them ways to help with their weak points and impose control upon them. The victims, scared and afraid, agree and become trapped much to their dismay. Then they are under the influence of human trafficking an it is almost impossible to get out. That is why we need to stay away from human trafficking.
In order to prevent human trafficking, it is important to know the limits. If someone sends a message to a person through social media and it seems suspicious, do not answer them. By answering them, a person is revealing their identity to a complete stranger. If a person needs help for personal problems, do not go to the public for help. This will put them at risk of being trafficked. If a person is being followed by a suspicious person that looks like danger, call 911. Do not hesitate, it could be for real. Do not take chances or risks. If a person invites someone to lunch or dinner or wants to meet them, it is important to take caution before responding. If a person is being trafficked, they should call the hotline number for human trafficking at 1-800-373-7888. This phone number is available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. These tips should help a person spot a human trafficker.
Identifying a person being human trafficking is very difficult, so it is important to know the warning signs of a person being trafficked. These red flag signs are important in order to spot a person being human trafficked. If a person is unable to leave and go without someone’s permission, providing sexual commercial acts under the age of eighteen, has a pimp/manager, or works for several hours a day and long periods without stopping, this person is a victim of human trafficking. If someone appears malnourished, and bears the scars and bruises of physical abuse, they most likely have a human trafficker on their hands. Signs of no eye contact, social interaction, or official identification documents usually means they are suffering from human trafficking. Even a person lacing personal possessions and appearing destitute could easily be under the influence of human trafficking. The most common sign of human trafficking is not being able to speak for themselves. When asked a question, the trafficker or even a third party will answer for them. Another common sign is if the victim is not in control of their bank account, ID, passport, or even their own money, this person is being human trafficked. If a person were to walk up to a victim and interact with them, the victim will most likely be unsure what city or state they are in, share complex stories that are confusing, and protect the person who is hurting them. (Polaris) There are many more signs that are crucial when it comes to identifying victims, but these are some of the main signs.
Why does human trafficking matter in our life? Why is it beneficial to know the signs of a person being trafficked? The answer is very simple: Human trafficking is happening in our community. It is taking place all around us, and it is important to recognize the signs of both traffickers and victims for our benefit. Human trafficking doesn’t affect just women as most people think. It also happens to men through forced labor and debt bondage. Anyone is affected, great or small. We need to know what to do if we ever were in a case like this, and so it is good to be prepared incase we were ever in a case like this. Human trafficking is scary business, and it is not something to shake off. Once we become a victim, it is almost impossible to get out of it. That is why we need to know the signs. All around the community, people are getting attacked. Are we next? It is essential to understand the importance of knowing about human trafficking for our own good.
Human trafficking is a very dangerous problem is our country today. By understanding the description, the types, and the history it will be able to help extend the knowledge of this issue in a person’s mind. When this knowledge is learned, spotting and identification in the community will be very useful. Remember to call 1-800-373-7888 in any case of emergency. Know your limits, don’t respond to people asking to meet you or other weird messages. With this information in mind, a person will know what to do in the case of human trafficking. Human trafficking is a hidden problem: watch out for it. So stay safe, and avoid the cruelty of human trafficking.