What is human trafficking?
Human trafficking is:
- the illegal trade of human beings for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor;
- a modern-day form of slavery;
- the fastest growing criminal industry in the world and is tied with the illegal arms industry as the second largest, after the drug-trade. (Rescue and Restore Campaign)
- Sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act has not attained 18 years of age, OR
- The recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.
Read Catholic News Services’ article that highlights USCCB’s work:
Human trafficking remains largely in the shadows across the US
What is the extent of the problem?
The U.S. State Department estimates that 600,000 - 800,000 men, women, and children are trafficked across international borders each year and approximately 14,500 – 17,500 of them are trafficked into the U.S. annually. Based on estimates by the U.S. government of the numbers of all trafficking victims and comparing those figures with widely cited figures of foreign-born children in the sex trade in the United States, USCCB/MRS estimates conservatively about one-third of foreign born victims trafficked into the country are children.
U.S. citizens are also trafficked within the U.S., although estimates are not readily available.
How does USCCB/MRS respond?
USCCB/MRS primarily responds through:
- Service provision for survivors
- Training and technical assistance
- Child trafficking specialty
- Education and advocacy
Visit USCCB Response to Human Trafficking to learn more about these programs and other USCCB/MRS anti-trafficking efforts.