What is Human Trafficking?

Human Trafficking is modern-day slavery, and it happens in communities throughout the South Bay, across the United States, and all over the world. Although human trafficking is illegal under both Federal and California law, the FBI has identified the Bay Area as one of the top hubs for human trafficking activity in the United States. Human trafficking is a world-wide multi-billion dollar criminal industry.  Traffickers use force, fraud, or coercion to exploit human beings for sex, labor, involuntary servitude, or other services against their will. The majority of victims are women and children.

Information from Polaris Project. Image from Yale Model United Nations.

Human trafficking occurs when a trafficker takes any one of the above actions, and then employs the means of force, fraud or coercion for the purpose of compelling the victim to provide commercial sex acts or labor or services. Minors induced into commercial sex are human trafficking victims – regardless of if force, fraud, or coercion is present. Image from Polaris Project.

The Realities of Human Trafficking

  • Human Trafficking  is hidden in plain sight in our neighborhoods. The key is to be aware and know where to report suspicions that someone is possibly being exploited and might feel unable to leave their work situation.
  • Most identified victims of human trafficking here are women.
  • Sexual exploitation was found to be the most common form of human trafficking in the Silicon Valley.
  • In the Silicon Valley, most human trafficking victims are U.S nationals, followed by Mexico, and Asia respectively.
  • Between March 2012, and August 2015, Santa Clara County agencies served 279 Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (CSEC) exclusively.
  • Between the years of 2003, and 2015, Santa Clara County agencies served 314 adult and minor survivors of human trafficking.