COVID has exacerbated every vulnerability that traffickers prey on when choosing their victims. Learn more about the most urgent four below.
Due to COVID, unemployment rates will end higher this year than any time since the Great Depression and experts are saying we might not return to our pre-pandemic levels until 2022, the Organization for Economic and Cooperation and Development said. Because of this, millions of people are left with income insecurity and feelings of desperation.Traffickers are aware of this desperation and are targeting unemployed individuals using deception to persuade these individuals to take jobs that are highly underpaid or sexual in nature. Feeling they have no other option, victims are convinced that they must work for the trafficker and meet their demands to make ends meet.As we process COVID-19 and its impact on the part-time, hourly, gig, and independent contractor workers’ livelihoods, we see the clear increase in vulnerabilities that lead to trafficking. But there are ways to help fight this issue from your home: 1. Donate to Collective Liberty to contribute to our Survivor Employment Fund which helps survivors find employment.2. Donate to your local United Way to help survivors meet their needs when they leave abusers 3. Stay informed by subscribing to our newsletter through our website.***In recognition of World Against Human Trafficking in Person Day, this week we want to note the various ways that COVID has exacerbated this very important issue.***
In recognition of World Day Against Human Trafficking in Persons, this week we want to note the various ways that COVID has exacerbated the very important issue of human trafficking. With more kids spending so much more time online unattended due to COVID, they are often left highly exposed. Traffickers and sexual predators see this as an opportunity to prey on children through popular online platforms such as social media or online gaming sites.
During the lockdown, producing and accessing child sexual abuse material and live-stream child sexual abuse online has now become an easy alternative to lure children into sexual activities. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and the Internet Watch Foundation have found:“a huge rise in reports of online child abuse images: more than 4 million reports of online child sexual abuse in April — an increase of nearly 3 million from April 2019).” This eye-opening report shows that we must do what we can during this time to protect our vulnerable children.
Here’s what you can do to help:
- 1. To know how to how to keep your children safe online go to https://www.missingkids.org/
- 2. To stay informed, subscribe to our weekly newsletter through our website
COVID has made a grave impact on housing instability. Experts estimate that homelessness could increase between 40-45% this year which would result in an addition of 250,000 people into homelessness. Traffickers prey specifically on housing vulnerabilities when choosing their victims, and this population is more at risk now than ever. Unsheltered homeless populations face very restricted options for survival, the most common choices being selling drugs or trading sex. This makes these individuals susceptible to the promises of traffickers who recognize and target their vulnerabilities. Homeless youth are especially in danger, seeing how both their age and situation put them even more at risk to manipulation and deception by traffickers. It is estimated that a staggering one-in-five homeless youth are trafficked. Due to the alarming nature of these reports, it is crucial that these individuals get the protection that they need. Here are ways you can help from home:1. To take direct action: Donate to United Way to help survivors meet their needs when they leave abusers.2. Stay informed by subscribing to our newsletter https://collectiveliberty.org/stay-informed
The U.N. has described the worldwide increase in domestic violence as a “shadow pandemic” alongside COVID-19. Often times, traffickers pose as intimate partners, coercing the victims to engage in commercial sex, forced labor, or involuntary servitude. Lockdowns have made it more difficult for domestic violence survivors to distance themselves from their abusers and people are trapped with their abusers in conditions where trafficking thrives. There is an evident overlap between abusers and traffickers when it comes to exerting control over their victim. Sometimes, trafficked individuals have to live with their trafficker and are subject to the verbal, physical, mental abuse, manipulation, and extreme control that are hallmarks of domestic violence. The 2009 U.S. State Department Trafficking in Persons Report cited a London-based study, which found that “70% of adult female trafficking victims experienced domestic violence prior to being trafficked.” In the US alone, around 12 million people will experience intimate partner violence this year. 1) Donate directly to the National Domestic Violence Hotline https://www.thehotline.org/get-involved/donate/2) Stay informed by subscribing to our newsletterhttps://collectiveliberty.org/stay-informed/