[June 14]--A recently announced study shows that the US holds a position in the top tier for human trafficking. More than 50,000 adults and children, some as young as 11, are trafficked into or through the US each year. In Tier 3 countries, like India, children are worth less than cattle.
The most disturbing fact? The trafficking industry earns twice as much worldwide revenue as Coca Cola each year.
"In some cases, foreign workers, drawn by the hope of a better life in America, are trapped by abusive employers,"Clinton, who released the report on Moday, said. "And there are Americans, unfortunately, who are held in sexual slavery. Some find themselves trapped through debt to work against their will in conditions of modern-day bondage."
Some victims who were originally forced into slave labor can sometimes be arrested and tried for prostitution. For instance, an exotic dancer in Clearwater recently testified against charges of prostitution, claiming she had been forced into the business illegally, (MyFox Tampa Bay, June 8 2010).
These are simply Tier 1 cases, meaning they occur in countries that comply with the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) minimal standards. That said, 50,000 plus victims are the brighter side of this situation.
Sex traffickers use a variety of methods to “condition” their victims including starvation, beatings, rape, gang rape, and the threat of shaming their victims by revealing the victim's activities. Eighty percent of all trafficking victims are women, fifty percent of them being minors. Less than 200 of those victims are saved each year.
Slavery is far from from abolished.