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HUMAN TRAFFICKING EDUCATION

MODERN-DAY

SLAVERY

Slavery that exists in present day society through any form of forced human exploitation for labor or service.

EXPLOITATION

The act of treating someone unfairly in order to benefit from their work.

SEX TRAFFICKING

A form of exploitation in which individuals are forced to perform commercial acts for the profit of others through force, fraud or coercion.

 

Minors in the U.S. are considered victims if they are involved in any commercial sex act. 

HUMAN TRAFFICKING

A form of modern-day slavery that involves the buying and selling of people for profit.

LABOR TRAFFICKING

A form of modern-day slavery that involves a person forcing another to perform labor or services for profit. This includes situations of debt bondage, forced labor and involuntary child labor.

To understand the stats, we need to understand the stories of vulnerability.

SEX TRAFFICKING: A story behind the stats

Read about Molly below.

Mollys Story

This story combines real survivor stories into a single narrative.

When "Molly" was 9, her parents got divorced and Molly and her younger sister moved in with their mom. Soon, her mom’s new boyfriend started spending time with them and bringing fun gifts. Unfortunately, those gifts were used to build trust and distorted
affection with Molly that eventually led to  sexual abuse.

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By the time Molly turned 17, she was desperate to get away from home.  She met a guy online who said all the right things and she quickly fell in love. She was excited to run away with him, but in the process she was isolated from family and friends. 

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After they left, she learned that he had lied about his job, age, and intentions. He forced her to have sex with others for money. But he said he loved her and it was only until he saved up enough money for them to be together.

She didn’t know she was being trafficked  because all the images she saw about human trafficking were people chained, locked in a basement, or being controlled by a pimp. That wasn’t her story – she chose to go with her boyfriend, didn’t she? One day after another brutal beating, Molly finally realized that she had to run. Even though her boyfriend had convinced her that if she sought help, she’d be arrested and he’d go after her sister, she knew she had to take the risk.

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Molly got connected to Wings of Refuge  and spent 11 months at the restoration home finding freedom and support to process through her trauma, overcoming what made her vulnerable to being trafficked in the first place, and practicing healthy life skills that empowered her to take the next step toward independence and new life!

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When "Molly" was 9, her parents got divorced and Molly and her younger sister moved in with their mom. Soon, her mom’s new boyfriend started spending time with them and bringing fun gifts. Unfortunately, those gifts were used to build trust and distorted affection with Molly that eventually led to  sexual abuse.

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By the time Molly turned 17, she was desperate to get away from home.  She met a guy online who said all the right things and she quickly fell in love. She was excited to run away with him, but in the process she was isolated from family and friends. 

allef-vinicius-fJTqyZMOh18-unsplash.jpg

But he said he loved her and it was only until he saved up enough money for them to be together.

After they left, she learned that he had lied about his job, age, and intentions. He forced her to have sex with others for money.

NATIONALLY
THE AVERAGE
age of entry into
commercial
SEXUAL EXPLOITATION
is during the teenage years.
HUMAN TRAFFICKING
has been documented
IN ALL 50 STATES
IN AMERICA
According to a 2012  Urban Institute study, traffickers made between $5,000-$32,833 in a week. 
There are an estimated
3.5 million
buyers of sex
each day in the
United States.
100%
Watching any form of
PORNOGRAPHY
directly fuels the demand
for sex traffickers to make
money by selling videos of
their sex slaves to porn sites.
199,000 incidents of sexual exploitation of minors occurs each year in the U.S. That’s one incident every 3 minutes.
Only 1-2% of victims are ever recovered
LOCALLY
IOWA is one of the crossroads of domestic sex trafficking in the U.S.
 Two of the nation's largest
highways, I-80 and I-35
intersect our state.
The problem is here,
and the problem is real.
Statistics indicate there are 100-200 internet
posts daily in Iowa
advertising the sale of sex.

100-200

SPECIAL EVENTS
CAN INCREASE
THAT NUMBER BY:
45%

​Des Moines has been identified by Polaris, a national anti-human trafficking organization, as one of the country’s 

top 100 sites

across the U.S

for suspected

massage- related

trafficking.

7

seven years
is the average
anticipate lifespan
for someone in the life.

Buyers are typically middle-aged men

   (white males 30-49). 70% of buyers

     have a college education and 66%

        of them are fathers.

RECOGNIZE THE WARNING SIGNS
OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING
If you pick up on the warning signs and potential red flags of human trafficking
you can identify victims and help them find the assistance they need.
Request help by contacting the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 888-3737-888, call the Iowa Victim Service Call Center at 1-800-770-1650, or call your local law enforcement.
  • Unpaid or paid very little for work

  • Submissive/nervous/paranoid/fearful/disoriented

  • Unusually fearful of law enforcement

  • Lack of medical care, food, sleep

  • Malnourished

  • Bruisings on body at various stages

  • Signs of sexual abuse/restraint/torture/confinement

  • Signs of physical abuse

  • Few or no personal possessions

  • Not in control of money or access to finances

  • Is not able to speak for themselves/”coached”

  • Has scripted or rehearsed answers

  • In a relationship with someone considerably older

  • Loss of sense of time

  • Avoids eye contact

  • Living in poverty and obtaining expensive items

  • Having large sums of cash

  • Sudden dramatic change in behavior

  • History of multiple abortions or adoptions

  • Substance abuse

  • Under 18 and in prostitution

  • Works in the “sex industry”

  • Tattoos and/or branding

  • Refers to “Daddy” of someone other than her father

  • Carries more than one cell phone

  • Uncharacteristically promiscuous

  • Frequently runs away from home

  • Claims of visiting/inability to clarify address/home

  • Lack of knowledge of whereabouts or what city she is in

  • Disconnected from family, friends, and community

  • Truancy

  • Lack of connection to society

  • Teenager with no cell phone

  • Numerous inconsistencies in her story

* Source: Shared Hope International, Courtney’s House, U.S. Dept. of State

Fact Sheet Disclaimer: Wings of Refuge has taken reasonable care in compiling the information contained on this fact page. Use of the information and data contained within this site or these pages is at your sole risk. This website is designed to be informative and educational. The information in this website is subject to change without notice.

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