Trafficking of children is a form of human trafficking.  It is defined as the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of children for the purpose of exploitation.  Trafficking is a lucrative industry. It is now the fastest growing criminal industry in the world. Globally, it is tied with the illegal arms trade, as the second largest criminal activity following the drug trade.

Human trafficking usually affects women and children. The total annual revenue for trafficking in persons is estimated to be between $5 billion and $9 billion.  The United Nations estimates nearly 2.5 million people from 127 different countries are being trafficked around the world.

Human TraffickingMira Sorvino Videos Of Human Trafficking In The US And World Wide

Child Trafficking

Children are trafficked for forced labor, domestic work, as child soldiers, and as camel jockeys, but most children are trafficked for sexual exploitation. And girls trafficked for forced labor and domestic work often end up sexually exploited by their employers.                                

In 2006, the US State Department reported that one million children are exploited in the global sex trade. Sex tourists, seeking anonymity and impunity in foreign lands, exploit many of these children in child sex tourism.

Child trafficking can occur when children are abducted from the streets, sold into sexual slavery and forced marriage by relatives, or in any place where traffickers, pimps and recruiters prey upon a child's vulnerabilities. Poverty is the pre-condition that makes it easier for traffickers to operate.

The greatest factor in promoting child sex trafficking and child sexual exploitation is the demand for younger and younger victims worldwide. This demand comes from the mostly male buyers who become the customers in the growing global sex industry.

Most women in prostitution are trafficked into the sex industry as children. 75-80 percent of women in prostitution were sexually abused as children. Worldwide, the average age of entrance into prostitution is 13. When girls in prostitution become 18, their prostitution does not become a self-determined choice.

How Does Human Trafficking Affect Our Schools?

Trafficking can involve school-age children—particularly those not living with their parents—who are vulnerable to coerced labor exploitation, domestic servitude, or commercial sexual exploitation (i.e., prostitution).

Sex traffickers target children because of their vulnerability and gullibility, as well as the market demand for young victims. Those who recruit minors into prostitution violate federal anti-trafficking laws, even if there is no coercion or movement across state lines. The children at risk are not just high school students—studies demonstrate that pimps prey on victims as young as 12. Traffickers have been reported targeting their minor victims through telephone chat-lines, clubs, on the street, through friends, and at malls, as well as using girls to recruit other girls at schools and after-school programs.

Learn More About Child Trafficking

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UNICEF / Child Trafficking Research Hub

Stop Child Trafficking Now              Human Trafficking Of Children USA

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How Do I Identify a Victim of Human Trafficking? * 

A victim:
Has unexplained absences from school for a period of time, and is therefore a truant

Demonstrates an inability to attend school on a regular basis

Chronically runs away from home

Makes references to frequent travel to other cities

Exhibits bruises or other physical trauma, withdrawn behavior, depression, or fear

Lacks control over her or his schedule or identification documents

Child Trafficking Can Happen At Your School     

Is hungry-malnourished or inappropriately dressed (based on weather conditions or surroundings) Shows signs of drug addiction

How Do I Report a Suspected Incidence of Human Trafficking?

In cases of immediate emergencies, it is best to call your local police department or emergency access number.

You can report suspected trafficking crimes or get help by calling the national 24/7 toll-free Human Trafficking Resource Center at 1-888-373-7888.

This center will help you determine if you have encountered a victim of human trafficking; identify local resources available in your community to help victims; and coordinate with local social service providers to help protect and serve victims so they can begin the process of rehabilitation and restoring their lives. When appropriate, the Resource Center makes referrals to local organizations that assist victims with counseling, case management, legal advice, and other appropriate services, as well as to law enforcement agencies that help trapped victims reach safety.

For sexually exploited or abused minors call the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children’s (NCMEC) hotline at 1-800-THE-LOST to be connected with the most appropriate assistance in your area, or you can report incidents at

You can report suspected instances of trafficking or worker exploitation by contacting the FBI field office nearest you or by contacting the Department of Justice’s Human Trafficking Office at 1-888-428-7581

Stop Child Trafficking At Truck Stops


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