As hard as it may be to believe, slavery still exists today in the form of human trafficking. Human trafficking occurs worldwide, even in Ohio. Victims are subjected to sexual violence, rape, and other forms of abuse. Understanding the facts behind this issue is essential, as reporting human trafficking could very well save a life.
Human trafficking is often confused with human smuggling, which involves illegal border crossings. In fact, the crime of human trafficking does not require any movement whatsoever. Survivors can be recruited and trafficked in their own home towns, even their own homes. Adults and children, men and women can become victims. Many find themselves trapped in a cycle of abuse that they don’t know how to escape. The National Human Trafficking Hotline was created to help victims and everyday citizens get help or report tips. Toll free and confidential, this hotline can be reached by calling 1-888-373-7888, texting “BeFree” (233733), or using a live chat at HumanTraffickingHotline.org.
Know the Facts
Human trafficking exists in Ohio, and in 2018 alone, the Human Trafficking Hotline received over 1,223 contacts referencing Ohio, with 443 reported cases of human trafficking. The vast majority of these cases involved sex trafficking, with residence-based, motel-based, and street-based venues all being quite common.
Human trafficking is a serious problem in Ohio and elsewhere, but victims don’t have to remain victims forever. As more people become aware of this issue, they will be better positioned to help victims escape from their dire situation.