Human Trafficking 101

Global Trafficking

According to the 2021 International Labor Report,

– An estimated 49.6 million people are victims of human trafficking globally

– An estimated 27.6 million people in forced labor, 6.3 million people in forced commercial sexual exploitation, 3.9 million people in state imposed forced labor

– 1 in 4 victims are children worldwide

– Human trafficking grosses over $150 billion annually

Human Trafficking in the U.S.

– Human trafficking is an underreported crime and often difficult to quantify due to survivors not always identifying themselves as victims, newness of state laws, and often HT is reported as another crime such as sexual assault, human smuggling, domestic violence, child pornography etc.

– From 2007-2022, Polaris reported 82,301 cases of human trafficking identified through the national hotline (cases can involve more than one victim)

– In 2023, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children estimated that 1 in 6 endangered runaways reported were likely sex trafficking victims. Of those who were in the care of social services or foster care when they ran away, 19% were likely victims of child sex trafficking.

Human Trafficking in Ohio and Summit County

– Ohio is 6th in the Nation for number of hotline signals to the Polaris Project but 4th overall in the nation for human trafficking. This means that trafficking is occurring frequently in Ohio, but it also shows that Ohio is doing consistently identifying and reporting.

– According to the CDC, in 2021 Ohio was in the top states with drug overdoses leading to death. Drugs are often used as a form of coercion to get individuals to stay and the overlap between the heroin epidemic and human trafficking is actively being researched.

– The Summit County Collaborative Against Human Trafficking has been tracking local data since October of 2018 and will continue tracking as a Collaborative quarterly.

If you or someone you know would like more information about the resources and providers in our community, please check out our Resource Guide below.