Sex Trafficking: Our Worst Global Pandemic
April 29, 2020 | Personal Injury
As America and the rest of the world battle the Coronavirus crisis, we have, within our midst, what is one of the worst global pandemics to ever strike humankind.
While many think of slavery as a thing of the past, sex slaves are sold right under our noses, on a daily basis, and most of us aren’t even aware of it.
Even those who do know that sex trafficking and human slavery are still ongoing seem to believe that it is limited only to women.
The truth is, men and children are also being sold like cattle, and it is only getting worse, as recently explained by Marie Napoli and Michelle M. Greene in the New York Law Journal.
What is Sex Trafficking?
Although the term sex trafficking has been in the news media a great deal over the last few years, there are still some who are not really aware of what it is.
According to Wikipedia, sex trafficking is the sale or trade of human beings in order to force them to sell their bodies for sex as a sex slave or as a prostitute or other sex worker.
The sex trafficking industry makes an estimated 99 billion dollars annually. The International Labor Organization estimates that there are almost 25 million victims across the globe.
There are more slaves in the world today than at any other point in history. In fact, over half of all trafficking victims in 2014 were victims of sex trafficking.
Females make up 71% of those victims, and while 51% of those females are women, 20% are just girls.
Victims of sex trafficking are usually coerced or forced into depending on a trafficker and then forced to give sexual favors to the customers who come to the trafficker.
Sex slaves may also be sold as personal property to wealthy clients who may then take the victim to another country, where it is difficult for them to ever find their way home.
It is not something that you would like to believe could be going on right there in your town or city.
It is not something that should be going on anywhere.
How Does NY Sex Trafficking Happen?
There are several ways that someone can become a victim of sex trafficking in New York.
For example, a young married woman is left by her husband.
She is scared and alone for the first time in her life. She goes online and chats with different people to try and ease the loneliness. Pretty soon, a seemingly nice guy sends her a message.
They talk for hours about everything. She is vulnerable and hurting and needs someone to open up to and he knows all of the right words to say to convince her to do so.
It feels good to have someone care enough to push her to share her pain.
It doesn’t take him long to find out exactly what she is missing in her life and pretend to be exactly what she needs.
He showers her with attention and makes her feel beautiful and wanted again instead of the rejection that she felt after her divorce.
Soon, she agrees to meet him somewhere in New York City.
During that meeting, he will be charming and caring and everything she has ever wanted in a man.
The devil will never come to you with cloven hoofs and a red tail, he will come disguised as everything you ever dreamed of.
As soon as he has the chance, this man will have this woman alone and depending on him for everything.
He will probably convince her to move far away from everyone she knows. Once she is isolated and dependent, he can pretty much control her in any way that he wants.
He can force her to give sexual favors to his clients or sell her to someone.
Although this process takes some time, he doesn’t have to use force or kidnap her for her to be a victim of sex trafficking in New York.
All he had to do was find the right girl who was alone, gullible, and vulnerable.
She could be recently divorced, a teenage girl with low self-esteem or even a beautiful, popular girl who you’d never think would fall for such.
This is why it is so important for us to stay connected to the women and girls that we love.
Of course, traffickers will also forcibly kidnap women as well as men and children.
Even though it is riskier, it is also faster.
Immigrants and Victims From Other Countries
Men, women, and children from other countries are especially at risk.
Some of them have been brought to the United States where they thought they were coming to work at a regular job.
Instead, these people are taken to a brothel or other place where they are held as a slave until they can pay off their fee for the trip to America.
Of course, the pay is so little that they will never be released.
Victims like this find themselves in a foreign country illegally, where they don’t know anyone and have no way to get home.
They are threatened with being turned over to the authorities, they are beaten, raped, and programmed not to fight back.
Some of them are taken to factories to work, some are sold as sex slaves, and some are forced into prostitution but none of them are ever set free or allowed to see their families.
What Can You Do?
Many people would do more to stop sex trafficking and human slavery if they just knew how.
While you should never put yourself into a dangerous situation to try and save them, if you suspect that someone is a victim of sex trafficking there is a National Hotline to call at 1-888-373-7888.
There is someone available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help.
You might also use your social media accounts to share articles and spread awareness of this global issue. Our attorneys are also available to provide confidential legal assistance.
How Can We Help?
Do you need assistance with a legal matter? Our attorneys have the experience needed to guide you in the right direction.