Human Trafficking: Key Facts and Statistics

Knowledge is power. Read about what human trafficking is really like in America, and what you can do as a citizen to join the fight to end it. 

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What is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. 

Labor Trafficking

The recruitment, harboring, transportation or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purposes of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.

Sex Trafficking

The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of a person for the purposes of a commercial sex act, in which the commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induces to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age. 

Learn More About Human Trafficking from DeliverFund

U.S. Human Trafficking By the Numbers

Dollar-for-dollar, human trafficking in America is far worse than it is overseas.

It is a market that is growing exponentially, putting $975 million in the pockets of human traffickers every year.

Every 2.5 Hours

a child is taken by human traffickers

7 Years Average Lifespan

of a child victim once taken

100,000-150,000

victims are held as commercial sex slaves.

96% of trafficking victims

are female.

Every trafficked child

is purchased for sex 5.4 times a day.

50% of trafficking victims

are children.

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The Indicators of Human Trafficking

There are several indicators that can help identify potential trafficking victims. Being able to recognize red flags and possible indicators is the first step to rescuing the victim and arresting their trafficker.

Hover over the following indicators to learn more. Indicators are not all-encompassing. Every human trafficking victim is different. Victims may exhibit only one of these indicators, or they may exhibit several.

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Every trafficking case represents a person who has been exploited by a predator. With your support, we can give our law enforcement partners the tools they need to solve more cases faster.

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Human Trafficking News in the United States

DeliverFund is compiling all media reports related to human trafficking, but there are many incidences that go unreported.

Click on the map to find articles about human trafficking happening within the United States.

How Human Traffickers Groom Their Victims

Human traffickers use any tool available to them to connect with potential victims. Contrary to popular belief, these predators rarely kidnap victims, but rather employ psychological manipulation to get what they want.

Scroll throough to see some of the signs of grooming for human trafficking employed by traffickers.

#1 The Hunt Begins
Targeting a victim

Human traffickers use any tools available to them to make a connection to potential victims, such as social media, video gaming consoles, and chat rooms.
#2 Scouting Victims
Ideal Characteristics

The traffickers often search for specific characteristics that make a victim the most vulnerable. This includes emotional neediness, low self-confidence, and economic stress.
#3 Manipulation
Gaining Trust

While looking for the role they can play in a victim’s life, traffickers work to obtain trust from the victim through casual conversations over weeks and sometimes over months. Traffickers also send their current victims to interact with potential victims in order to gain trust. These girls essentially act as scouts for the trafficker.
#4 Dependency
Filling a Need

The traffickers utilize the information they gathered to fill a role in the victim’s life. Through gifts, love, friendship, drugs, or alcohol, traffickers force the victims into a dependent relationship.
#5 Trapping the Victim
Forced Isolation

With their new role in the victim’s life, traffickers wedge themselves between the victim and those closest to them–their friends and family.
#6 Abusive Behavior
Maintain Control

The traffickers claim a service they offered must be repaid (providing drugs, alcohol, car rides, or cell phones, for instance). They typically demand sex as payment. Then, through threats, violence, fear, or blackmail, the traffickers maintain full control over the victim.
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Human Trafficking Statistics

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