You can stop the demand for human trafficking

By Kelsey Kastrava
November 28, 2010

The most lucrative crimes in the entire world are in the slave trade. Yes, in year 2010 we have slavery existing both inside and outside of our borders. Modern-day slavery is now called human trafficking. It is also one of the most hidden crimes. How is this possible?

Human trafficking is the buying and selling of persons for one of three reasons: domestic servitude, forced labor or sexual exploitation. This practice of modern-day slavery is the fastest growing criminal industry in the world.

Trafficking typically comes as a result of extreme poverty, lack of education and the desperate hope for survival. Many are lured by false promises of a job outside of their unstable home and are in many cases drugged, raped or isolated from humanity to perform the job demanded by their new owner.

While the problem of human trafficking has been glamorized in Hollywood films as something that exists miles away from our country, there is evidence of tens of thousands of trafficked people in the U.S.

Service stores such as nail salons, massage parlors and restaurants are just a few industries that have been searched and arrested for human trafficking in the U.S.

According to the Polaris Project, a non-profit organization that works to combat trafficking, “An estimated 17,500 foreign nationals are trafficked annually in the United States alone. The number of U.S. citizens trafficked within the country is even higher.”

As a country, we ignore this issue. Too many people refuse to believe that trafficking exists all around you.

Are you wondering what role you play in addressing this problem? There are several ways that you can stop the demand for human trafficking.

By researching all of the products you buy such as food, clothing and electronics you can ensure that no forced labor or injustice was performed while making your product. is a website that allows consumers to see the rating of their favorite brand from a scale of A to F. The power of being a wise consumer is the first step to ending the demand.

Read our features section on pages 8 and 9 to hear how two ordinary people have helped to stop the demand by simply enlightening themselves and others on the issue.

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Kelsey Kastrava

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