Many survivors have been trafficked by romantic partners, including spouses, and by family members, including parents. In a recent survivor-led panel in Columbus, Ohio, one survivor of human trafficking said she was first trafficked by her own mother.
Many victims of trafficking don’t want to believe they are not in control, or do not trust a stranger to ask for help. This can be due to lack of trust, self-blame, or instructions by their traffickers about how to act. Know the signs of human trafficking to better identify and help victims.
Victims of labor trafficking work in deplorable conditions for little to no pay. In a recent PBS documentary, journalists found children from Guatemala — some as young as 12 — that were forced to live and work in virtual slavery on an Ohio egg farm to pay off their debts.
Human trafficking is often confused with human smuggling, which involves illegal border crossings. Trafficking does not require any movement whatsoever. Survivors can be recruited and trafficked in their own home towns, even their own homes.
Stories about human trafficking are often set in far-away places, but it happens all over the world, including in Central Ohio. Human trafficking victims have been found working in restaurants, hotels, nail salons, and shops in small towns and booming cities.