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  • Who does human trafficking affect?

    Human trafficking is an extremely complex issue, and it does not occur within a vacuum. It can happen to anyone, systemic injustices like racism, homophobia, sexism, economic inequality, and more lead some communities to face more risk of trafficking than others. Members of groups who suffer systemic discrimination and marginalization because of their sex, gender, ethnicity, tribe, caste, religion, sexual orientation, and more are particularly vulnerable. Lack of access to essentials such as education, health care, and financial stability are root causes that limit opportunity, exacerbate systemic injustices, and create vulnerabilities to trafficking. People without access to affordable health care, legitimate credit or government services are vulnerable because they must borrow money informally during emergencies and are forced to work off the debt in conditions of forced labor.

  • Where does human trafficking happen?

    Though illegal everywhere, human trafficking happens in every U.S. state and every country of the world.

  • What’s being done to combat human trafficking?

    Thousands of nonprofit organizations worldwide, most of them small community-based groups, are combating human trafficking on multiple fronts. Some promote strengthening the rule of law so that traffickers cannot act with impunity and victims have access to justice. Others work at a community-wide level to help liberate victims, help survivors recover, and help prevent anyone else from becoming being trafficked in the future. Many companies are investigating their product supply chains to eliminate trafficking-tainted raw materials. Universities and international institutions are conducting specialized research to document the root causes of trafficking and evaluate which strategies work best to end it. The United Way Center to Combat Human Trafficking aims to coordinate these many initiatives into a unified front. United, we will succeed.


Learn more about human trafficking by exploring these resources from some of our partners:  

Survivor Alliance  
McCain Institute  
International Labor Organization