When we hear the word “slavery,” most think of the enslavement of African-Americans that occurred over 150 years ago on plantations in the southern United States. Very few are aware that slavery still exists in our world today.
Modern day slavery is not based on skin color or class, it is solely based on vulnerability. Although anybody can fall victim to sexual exploitation, many studies have proven that women are predominantly victimized by the vicious cycle of human trafficking. However, we can stop this cycle by bringing more awareness to this issue.
According to HumanTraffickingSearch.org, 98 percent of victims are women with men making up the remaining two percent. Predators are seeking out vulnerable young women and forcing them into sex slavery. The predation of females has become a massive problem that is plaguing not only our country, but the world.
PolarisProject.org reports that there are 20.9 million victims of human trafficking globally. This is an astonishing number, yet many people are not aware of human trafficking. This is a horrible violation of human rights as people are being kidnapped and forced into commercial sexual labor. Victims are being forced against their will into sexual slavery while the perpetrators benefit financially.
Human trafficking is happening all around us, even in the most seemingly safe towns. Predators use the internet to find their prey. Online chat rooms, games and other online activities are used by predators to find unsuspecting, often lonely individuals. Once they take control of their victims, traffickers abuse their victims verbally, physically, mentally and emotionally.
Victims involved in human trafficking are sexually exploited and are “sold” from trafficker to trafficker through websites such as Craigslist. This horrifying truth needs to be acknowledged and dealt with for victims to get the freedom and justice that they deserve.
Education is key to overcoming human trafficking. We must raise awareness and shine light on this horrible violation of human rights. Traffickers must be caught and brought to justice for the horror they inflict on their victims. These perpetrators use coercion and false promises to lure and trap vulnerable and unsuspecting victims into sexual slavery. They employ tactics like fear and manipulation to frighten and intimidate their victims from escaping.
We must stand up for those affected and bring attention to this modern-day slavery. Nobody deserves to live in constant fear like these victims do. The cycle must end and change begins with us.
Moreover, human trafficking is morally and ethically wrong. Society needs to educate people on how to identify trafficking in action. We must eradicate sexual slavery and bring those suffering from this vicious cycle to safety.
If you or someone you know is in need of assistance, contact The National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-(888)-373-7888.
For more information, visit humantraffickinghotline.org.