What is the second largest criminal industry in the world after drug dealing? What criminal industry has grossed over 32 BILLION dollars? What industry makes more money than McDonald’s? The fastest growing criminal industry in the United States…Human Trafficking!
What is Human Trafficking? The use of force, threat of force, fraud or coercion to compel a person into any form of work or service against their will. According to Indiana Law IC 35-42-3.5 Human Trafficking is a person who, by force, threat of force, or fraud engages another person in: forced labor; involuntary servitude; marriage; prostitution and participation in sexual conduct. How does a trafficker identify their victim? Believe it or not, employers, gangs, drug suppliers, friends, and even some parents are typically the ones who introduce a youth into human trafficking. Social media and peer pressure play a huge part in human trafficking as well.
Human traffickers manipulate their victims. Child victims of human trafficking face significant emotional problems. As they are physically and sexually abused, they develop distinctive medical and psychological needs that affect their early adulthood.
Trafficked youth come from different backgrounds. Many have low self-esteem, family problems, or have been sexually abused in the past. Some may have drug or alcohol problems and are easy prey to human traffickers. Many of these youth are sold over and over.
In conjunction with our Safe Place program, certified Youth Connections staff members are working closely with the Indiana Youth Services Association (IYSA) and Indiana Trafficking Victim Assistance Program (ITVAP) to provide advocacy, information and referral and community education.
Think you may know someone who is being trafficked? Call the national hotline at 1-888-373-7888 in Indiana call the Indiana Child abuse Hotline 1-800-800-5556 and use the words human trafficking.
For more information, call Youth Connections 317-738-3273.
Together we can end this horrible epidemic.