It’s mind boggling to think this is happening so much around the world, and yes a lot of it even in North America! Human trafficking is definitely not new, but it’s growth has exploded to an all time high. Now with more awareness it is showing itself as a global epidemic, and the statistics are absolutely heart wrenching! Sadly it has become big business of the most barbaric kind! World wide it’s a 32 billion dollar a year business, with the USA contributing 9.5 billion to it.
People are often tricked by trafficker’s with the promise of work, or marriage, are coerced, or outright abducted. Once entrapped the victims endure mental, emotional, sexual, and physical abuse. The psychological and spiritual abuse are devastating, and the scars can last a life time.
The following six facts about human trafficking really surprised us. It is unfortunate most people do not have a clue about this, but awareness brings change, it shines light on the dark so here they are:
1. Research estimated that there are between 21 and 30 million enslaved in human trafficking, and modern day slavery. Children and teens are the most vulnerable and the average ages are from 12 to 14, with 300 000 trafficked each year in the USA.
2. Mauritania, Uzbekistan, and Haiti are the top three countries in the world with the most slavery, and trafficking by % of population. The number of people enslaved in India is 14 Million, 3.2 million in China, and 2.1 million in Pakistan. The people being trafficked include children, women, and even men. This problem is huge!
3. The victims of all ages are being used not only sexually, or physically for labor, but their organs are being harvested for people who need transplants. People are being abducted, and smuggled into countries for those specific reasons.
4. Large events like the Super Bowl are used as business opportunities to sell human’s in the most vile ways. It’s estimated 10,000 prostitutes were transported to the 2012 event in Miami.
5. The internet has made it easier for this type of activity to flourish out of sight as these victims are no longer standing on street corners.
6. Victims are often transported on our highways, on airplanes, and though the airports right in front of us.
Some signs a person is being trafficked that people can watch for are: a child’s clothes are inappropriate in size, or for the climate, or is dressed sexually provocatively. The person looks under nourished, appears physically/sexually abused like bruises, burns, scars etc., seem to be intoxicated or drugged. They have next to no belongings if any at all. The person is fearful to speak, a trafficker interferes with anyone speaking to them, and they don’t know where they are going, arrival etc. They are not allowed to go anywhere alone, they are closely guarded and kept under control.
It’s going to take people paying attention to stop this. If you suspect someone is being trafficked don’t personally try to rescue them, but call The National Human Trafficking Resource Center Hotline at 1-888-373-7888 or text HELP or INFO to Be Free (233733) for support. Call the local police, 911, or airport security!
Please join us in this prayer for those who are entrapped. Holy God please give all those who have been enslaved the grace, and strength to persevere, free them, bless, protect, heal, guide them, and send them help. In Jesus name Amen.