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Human Trafficking

Human trafficking is the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harboring, or receipt of persons by improper means (such as force,abduction, fraud, or coercion) for an improper purpose including forced labor or sexual exploitation.

Forms of Human Trafficking

forms of HT

Domestic Servitude

Employees working in private homes are forced or coerced into serving and/or fraudulently convinced that they have no option to leave.


Forced Labour

Human beings are forced to work under the threat of violence and for no pay. These slaves are treated as property and exploited to create a product for commercial sale.


Sex Trafficking

Women, men or children that are forced into the commercial sex industry and held

against their will, by force, fraud or coercion.


Bonded Labour

Individuals that are compelled to work in order to repay a debt and unable to leave until the debt is repaid. It is the most common form of enslavement in the world 


Child Labour

Any enslavement — whether forced labour, domestic servitude, bonded labour or sex trafficking — of a child.


Forced Marriage

Women and children who are forced to marry another without their consent or against their will.


Red Flags

  • Runaways - “throwaways” (1/3 teens are lured into prostitution within 48 hours

of leaving home)

  • History of violence and abuse (28x more likely to enter into prostitution)

  • Younger girls are more vulnerable

  • Family breakdown/violence/poverty

  • Mental health issues

  • Unaddressed trauma

  • Substance abuse

  • Increasing sexualization of girls and young women

  • Access to technology

  • Children in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems


Psycho-social Red Flags

  • False IDs

  • Lying about age

  • Older boyfriend, dominating boyfriend

  • Hotel room keys

  • School absences

  • Restricted communication

  • Won’t make eye contact

  • Large amounts of cash, jewellery, new clothes

  • Multiple foster/group home placements, runaway attempts

  • Anxiety, s/s of PTSD, changes in habits

  • Family dysfunction

  • Avoidance and dissociative type behaviours

  • Suicide gestures or attempts

  • Presents for care with law enforcement needing clearance for placement in

juvenile detention or jail

  • Insomnia


Physical Red Flags

  • Inappropriate dress

  • Tattoos on neck, lower back with man’s name or initials/branding

  • Drug abuse/use

  • Multiple health care visits

  • Fatigue

  • Dizziness

  • Pelvic complaints, multiple pregnancy, STIs

  • Chronic pain

  • Untreated medical problems such as asthma, skin infections, diabetes

  • Weight loss

  • Signs of assault such as perioral or intraoral injuries from forced oral sex, neck

bruising or hickies, burns, impact bruises, traumatic alopecia from forceful hair
pulling, ligature marks, abrasion and friction injuries

Red flags
Stages of exploitation

Warning Signs when Travelling

Travelling warning signs

Traffickers and Recruiters often exhibit similar patterns of behaviour. Below are the most common behaviours. Knowing what to watch out for when travelling could save your life.  

1. The traveller may seem inappropriately dressed for their route of travel. This means their clothing will be the wrong size and Often times they will have few to no personal items and if travelling with a companion will be noticeably undressed compared to their companion 
inappropriate for the weather. 


2. Traffickers and pimp use tattoos to establish ownership over their victims. Often times victims will have tattoos of a bar code, the word "Daddy" or a
mans name. A person having tattoos is not an indication of being trafficked or a trafficker.  That being said the tattoos listed above could be a red flag that person is a victim of trafficking. 


3. Traffickers often can't provide details of their departure location, destination, or flight information. Traffickers employ a number of tools to avoid raising suspicion about their crime and to keep victims enslaved. Some traffickers won't tell their victims where they are located, being taken, or even what job they will have. Traffickers use this to force they must rely on traffickers in order to get by, forcing them to stay in their situation.
reliance, if victims don't know where they are and lack the ability to pay for food or to get home, then


4. Their communication seems scripted, or there are inconsistencies with their
story. Sometimes traffickers will coach their victims to say certain things in public to avoid suspicion. A traveller whose story seems inconsistent or too scripted might be trying to hide the real reason for their travel and merely reciting what a trafficker has told them to say.


5. Recruiters can't move freely in an airport or on a plane, because they are being controlled
or closely watched/followed. People being trafficked into slavery are sometimes guarded in transit. A trafficker will try to ensure that the victim does not escape, or reach out to authorities for help.


6. They are afraid to discuss themselves around others, deferring any attempts at conversation to someone who appears to be controlling them. Fear and intimidation are two of the tools that traffickers use to control people in slavery. Traffickers often prevent victims from interacting with the public because the victim might say something that raises suspicions about their safety and freedom.


7. Child trafficking. A child being trafficked for sexual exploitation may be dressed in a sexualized manner, or seem to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol. the child may appear to be malnourished and/or shows signs of physical or sexual abuse, such as bruises, scars, or cigarette burns.


If you have been considering suicide as an option. If someone you love is exhibiting concerning behaviour then please reach out for help to your local Victim Services for help.  Having an open and honest conversation as well as seeking proper help you could prevent the unthinkable. 


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