• Brooke Ruhl

You are in Danger: The overwhelming risk of human trafficking

The most common misperception I hear about human trafficking is that people do not fully understand how much of a risk is really is. When people think of human trafficking, they generally think of it happening overseas, in less developed places. But the truth of the matter is that human trafficking affects 20 million people worldwide. Human trafficking even occurs in the state YOU live in.

The best defense against human trafficking is knowledge. And understanding just how big of a risk human trafficking is, is the best place to start. The most important questions to be asking are “Who is at risk of being trafficked?” and “Where are they being trafficked from?”

Who is at risk of being trafficked?

According to national and international statistics, the risk of human trafficking is not limited to any certain race, gender, age or environment. People often assume human trafficking is sexual in nature, and therefore assume only women are in danger. But that is not the case, as human trafficking has other purposes such as forced labor or domestic slavery. Below are the current statistics for victims of human trafficking.

  • 71% of victims are women or girls

  • 29% of victims are men or boys

  • 67.9% forced labor exploitation

  • 21.5% forced sexual exploitation

  • 10.5% other various forms of trafficking

The most common factor is that the risk of human trafficking increases in places where people often move around alone, have limited social or legal protection, or in environments where people have their attention focused on something other than their surroundings. Unfortunately that includes places such as gas stations, parking garages, and even college campuses.

While everyone is at risk, some groups face it more than others. Vulnerability for human trafficking increases in impoverished, hungry and poor communities. There are also high statistics in runaways and children in foster care. The risk also increases for people with a history of drug addiction, criminal records, or physical or sexual abuse.

Leave a comment below, or tweet me and let me know what you found the most surprising about these human trafficking statistics and facts!

@Brooke_Ruhl and use the hashtag #BRuhly_Trafficked


Brooke Ruhl

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Brooke Ruhl

University of Nevada Reno

2020 by Brooke Ruhl.