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Human Trafficking and Child Prostitution: FBI Rescues 105 Children on American Soil

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Around the world, there are an estimated 27 MILLION slaves. Human trafficking, the modern day name for slavery is a $32 BILLION dollar worldwide industry and the number of victims right here in the United States is estimated in the HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS.

That’s just sick, isn’t it? I felt like the biggest fool living in my own little happy land with no idea that human trafficking and child prostitution was as big a problem in the United States as it is. And then I became friends with a woman named Jane Evans.  Jane is the Director of Communications for a non-profit called Transport for Christ  and she explained to me that a big reason so many people don’t know how severe the situation is right here on our own soil is because not enough people are getting the word out.

In light of today’s news that the FBI has made 150 arrests in Operation Cross Country, and 105 children between the ages of 13-17 have been rescued nationwide, I beg you to help spread the word so that more bad guys can be taken down and that the innocent, especially the children, can be freed. I can’t even imagine.

According to the Polaris Project, these are the most common signs that someone is being trafficked:

  • Is not free to leave or come and go as he/she wishes
  • Is under 18 and is providing commercial sex acts
  • Is in the commercial sex industry and has a pimp / manager
  • Is unpaid, paid very little, or paid only through tips
  • Works excessively long and/or unusual hours
  • Is not allowed breaks or suffers under unusual restrictions at work
  • Owes a large debt and is unable to pay it off
  • Was recruited through false promises concerning the nature and conditions of his/her work
  • High security measures exist in the work and/or living locations (e.g. opaque windows, boarded up windows, bars on windows, barbed wire, security cameras, etc.)

Poor Mental Health or Abnormal Behavior

  • Is fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, or nervous/paranoid
  • Exhibits unusually fearful or anxious behavior after bringing up law enforcement
  • Avoids eye contact
  • Poor Physical Health
  • Lacks health care
  • Appears malnourished
  • Shows signs of physical and/or sexual abuse, physical restraint, confinement, or torture

Lack of Control

  • Has few or no personal possessions
  • Is not in control of his/her own money, no financial records, or bank account
  • Is not in control of his/her own identification documents (ID or passport)
  • Is not allowed or able to speak for themselves (a third party may insist on being present and/or translating)

Other

  • Claims of just visiting and inability to clarify where he/she is staying/address
  • Lack of knowledge of whereabouts and/or do not know what city he/she is in
  • Loss of sense of time
  • Has numerous inconsistencies in his/her story

If you suspect that someone you know is one of the bad guys, or if you believe you know of someone forced against their will into child prostitution or who has been trafficked, please do the right thing and call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-373-7888. The hotline is always open, it does NOT shut down. You can also text BeFree to 233733. All reports are confidential and interpreters are available.

If you want to do more to help, but don’t know how, the U.S. Department of State has all kinds of information for you.

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