Human Trafficking - Fact vs. Fiction
For National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, we've put together a quick guide for you to read, share, and dispel common myths and misconceptions surrounding human trafficking.
Fiction: Youth homelessness and human trafficking are not related issues.
Fact: Out of the 19% of young people who identify as trafficking survivors, 68% of those young people were trafficked or engaged in survival or commercial sex while homeless.
Fiction: Human trafficking only disproportionately affects girls and women.
Fact: LGBTQ youth are also disproportionately affected by human trafficking. LGBTQ youth are 125% more likely to experience homelessness and make up 25% of young people who have been trafficked. While human trafficking does in fact disproportionately affect girls and women, they are not the only demographic.
Fiction: Human trafficking victims are chained down or restrained.
Fact: Similar to cases of Stockholm Syndrome, many victims can create a "trauma bond" with their trafficker, despite enduring immense abuse and violence. This trauma bond keeps victims emotionally trapped in their captivity, believing that there is no escape.
Fiction: Human trafficking victims are always kidnapped and taken without their will.
Fact: Desperate and vulnerable young people experiencing homelessness have to make the difficult choice of sleeping on the street or going with a pimp who is promising food and shelter. Faced with these decisions, young people are easily manipulated into becoming victims of human trafficking.
Fiction: Young people experiencing homelessness are only at risk for sex trafficking
Fact: According to the Field Center for Children's Policy, Practice & Research at UPenn, 6% of young people experiencing homelessness were victims of labor trafficking.
To read more about Covenant House's work in advocacy, protection and services for human trafficking victims and survivors, click here.