What is Human Trafficking?

Human trafficking is modern-day slavery and involves the use of force, fraud or coercion to obtain labor or commercial sex. Every year, millions of men, women and children are trafficked in countries around the world, including the United States. There are different types of human trafficking:  Sex Trafficking Victims of sex trafficking are manipulated or forced to engage in sex acts for someone else’s commercial gain. Sex trafficking is not prostitution.
Anyone under the age of 18 engaging in commercial sex is considered to be a victim of human trafficking. No exceptions.  Forced Labor Victims of forced labor are compelled to work for little or no pay, often manufacturing or growing the products we use and consume every day.  Domestic Servitude Victims of domestic servitude are forced to work in isolation and are hidden in plain sight as nannies, housekeepers or domestic help.
Human trafficking and the hospitality industry
Traffickers often take advantage of the privacy and anonymity offered by the hospitality industry. They can operate discreetly because staff and guests may not know the signs of human trafficking.
You may have employees who are victims of forced labor. If a third party applied for a position on behalf of an individual or if employees are not receiving their own paychecks, these could be signs of human trafficking.
Hotels and motels are also major locations where traffickers force sex trafficking victims to provide commercial sex to paying customers. Victims may be forced to stay at a hotel or motel where customers come to them, or they are required to go to rooms rented out by the customers.
What actions can I take at my business to help stop human trafficking?
You play a significant role in helping to stop this terrible crime by:  Knowing the signs of human trafficking.  Designing a plan of action to respond to reports of human trafficking in your business.  Partnering with agencies that provide services to victims of human trafficking. In the case of lodging, consider offering vouchers to victims. Immediate housing for victims plays a vital role in beginning a victim’s healing process.  Providing employee training to help them understand and identify signs of human trafficking.  Distributing and posting the fact sheets in this kit to your employees.

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