Sex Trafficking US Statistics
Unlike other statistics you have come across in your life, the following stats have a pulse; they are America’s daughters, sisters, nieces and sometimes America’s sons also. This is what you came here for – to fight for them. The following information has been consolidated from multiple sources which you can reference at the bottom of the page. For every number you see we want you to remember that that number has a name and is someone’s child. That is why we exist- to intercept and prevent the numbers from rising.
- Sex Trafficking is the Fastest Growing Crime in the US
- 99% of buyers are male
- 14-16 common ages victims enter trafficking
- The number one place predators find their victims is on social media.
- Only 1% of traffickers are ever prosecuted.
- On average a child victim will have to tell 7 adults before recovery.
- 45% of child victims exploited in NYC were done so in a hotel.
- Less than 20% of law enforcement have had any kind of human trafficking training.
- 83% of victims of trafficking in the US are US citizens.
Those are stats we can generally all agree on as we dive into the numbers further we must give you a disclaimer… these stats we feel are shockingly low. It is rare for a victim of human trafficking to self report and without a victim reporting it is a wildly difficult crime to measure. We believe the numbers you see here are just a small window into this crime. For example to date their have been 3,718 reported cases of trafficking in the US, with 22,191 cases since 2007 [i]. However, a study in Texas discovered 79,000 minors for sale in Texas alone. You can see the discrepancy in these numbers and why we are lead to believe the stats associated with this crime are shockingly low.
Traffickers have an easier time exploiting girls in the United States because they are free to move about from coast to coast. For instance, a girl can be picked up in Alabama and within 48 hours she can be exploited in California. She is not being smuggled across country lines. She will not encounter a boarder check point. No, she is being transported right out in the open, moved between jurisdictions making it difficult for local law enforcement agencies to see and respond to. She sits in the passenger’s seat terrified. It is just another day for most Americans, they wake up and head to work. Unbeknownst to them this girl is a victim of sex trafficking. They see her as dressing inappropriately for her age but most think it is just a generational thing. The idea that these predators can hide the victims in plain sight makes it paramount that we as a community understand the indicators associated with trafficking. Equipping yourself with the common indicators and calling your local police department not only bolsters the data behind the crime but more importantly it gives that girl (or boy) a fighting chance.
How Does Your State Measure Up?
It was within the past decade that the Shared Hope International organization created the “Protected Innocence Challenge” which rates each state in regards to its legal framework of protection for the victims of sex trafficking. Each state has a report card and detailed analysis and recommendations. The comprehensive reports cover: the criminalization of domestic minor sex trafficking; criminal provisions for demand; criminal provisions for traffickers; criminal provisions for facilitators; protective provisions for the child victims; criminal justice tools for investigation and prosecution.[ii] For further information in regards to your specific state’s report card please visit Shared Hope International.
We ask that you don’t forget that these numbers have a name. They were born in the land of the free yet freedom was taken from them. Join us in the pursuit of their predators. Let justice prevail. Get Trained. Become a Guardian.
[ii] The Center for Court Innovation
[iii] Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF) Facts