Child Trafficking Victims
Child trafficking victims come from many backgrounds and include both boys and girls across a wide range of ages.
- Children are trafficked to the U.S. from all regions of the world and represent a variety of different races, ethnic groups and religions.
- Some children are brought to the U.S. and some are U.S. born.
- Internationally trafficked children may be lured to the U.S. through the promise of work or school and the opportunity to send money back to their families.
- Children are vulnerable to kidnappers, pimps, and professional brokers.
- Some children are sold to traffickers by their families, who may or may not have an understanding of what will happen to the child.
- The number of human trafficking victims annually is in the range of 2 to 4 MILLION
- 50% of those victims are estimated to be children
- It is estimated that 76 percent of transactions for sex with underage girls start on the Internet
- 2 million children are subjected to prostitution in the global commercial sex trade (UNICEF)
In the U.S. the largest group of at-risk children are runaway, thrown away, or homeless children who use survival sex to acquire food, shelter, clothing, and other things needed to survive on the streets. According to the National Runaway Switchboard 1.3 million runaway and homeless youth live on America’s streets every day [5,000 die each year]. The number of children trafficked in the United States is likely much higher than 300,000.
Children are often targeted by traffickers as they are deemed easier to manipulate than adults. More money can be earned by younger girls and boys in sexual exploitation, especially virgins. Younger girls are expected to have a greater earning potential and as such are in greater demand.
According to government statistics the incidence of human trafficking is on the rise. It is imperative that clinicians expand their knowledge base about and effective treatment for trafficking victims.
Ross Counseling has a course that covers this topic in greater detail that can contribute to continuing education for mental health professionals.Sign up for Human Trafficking: Modern Day Slavery Happening in the U.S.