What is “human trafficking?”
Human trafficking is essentially a term for modern-day slavery. Humans are still bought and sold all over the world today for migrant work, domestic labor, and sexual exploitation. Street Ransom focuses on the trafficking of children for sex, which makes up 79% of all human trafficking.
Isn’t sex trafficking just prostitution?
Federally, sex trafficking is defined as “the recruiting, harboring, moving, or obtaining of a person through force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of sexual exploitation in order to gain money or favors.”
While both prostitution and sex trafficking involve engaging in sexual relations, the means and purpose behind the act differ drastically. With prostitution, the person performing the act benefits, but with sex trafficking, the pimp receives the money or favors and the victim is left broken and abused.
Children under 18 cannot legally consent to sex, which automatically defines those involved as victims of sex trafficking–not prostitutes.
Is this a problem in our area?
Sex trafficking is not an issue isolated to a certain region of the world. The reality is that it is a growing problem throughout our community and across the country and the fastest growing business of organized crime. Maryland and Washington DC have stricter laws on sex trafficking, and so traffickers are moving into Virginia, making it the fifteenth most prevalent state for this crime. Due to its proximity to Interstate 81, Roanoke has become a key location for traffickers to recruit and sell their victims.
Read up-to-date news articles about sex trafficking in Virginia on our page: In the News
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