How Trafficking Thrives and Prospers Around the Globe, and What You Can Do to Fight Back

Human Trafficking is a crime that includes three elements:

1) the ACT of recruiting, transporting, transferring, harboring or receiving a person;
2) by MEANS of e.g. coercion, deception or abuse of vulnerability;
3) for the PURPOSE of Exploitation.

Forms of exploitation specified in the definition of trafficking in persons include, prostitution of others, sexual exploitation, forced labor, slavery, servitude, and removal of organs. (Global Trafficking in Person Report 2016, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime).”

Source: UNDOC Human Trafficking



Human Trafficking victims are trafficked along a multitude of channels: within countries, between neighboring countries, or even across different continents. More than 500 different trafficking routes were detected between 2012 and 2014. Countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, East Asia and the Pacific, Eastern Europe and Central Asia are the most common.

Source: UNODC Elaboration of National Data

Over the last 10 years, the profile of detected trafficking victims has changed along with the trafficking areas. Although most detected victims are still women, children and men now make up larger shares of the total number of victims than before. In 2014, children comprised 28 percent, and men 21 percent. Among detected trafficking victims, victims who are trafficked for forced labor have increased, while victims who are trafficked for sex exploitation still make up the largest percentage. About four in 10 victims detected between 2012 and 2014 were trafficked for forced labor, as nearly five in 10 were for sex exploitation (Global Trafficking in Person Report 2016, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime).


The National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) declares:

“Labor trafficking and sex trafficking persist and thrive for a number of reasons, including:

Low Risks: Lack of government and law enforcement training, low community awareness, ineffective or unused laws, lack of law enforcement investigation, scarce resources for victim recovery services, and social blaming of victims.

High Profits: When individuals are willing to buy commercial sex, they create a market and make it profitable for traffickers to sexually exploit children and adults. When consumers are willing to buy goods and services from industries that rely on forced labor, they create a profit incentive for labor traffickers to maximize revenue with minimal production costs.”


#1 Tactic – Deceptive Promises

In most cases, victims are lured away from home by traffickers with promises of decent employment, a chance for a good education or simply a way to a better life. This is especially prevalent in developing countries, but is not limited to them, and happens in developed countries as well.

However, what most trafficked individuals encounter is not a better life. In fact, their freedom is stripped from them. To experience abuse, violence, deprivation and torture is normal for a victim. This abuse usually leads to trauma, which is difficult to treat due to the atrocities that are endured.

#2 Tactic: Forced Servitude, Breaking Self-Worth

If a person has experienced human trafficking, they have known a life worse than death itself. Sometimes they try to escape. When they do, punishment can be extreme and physically harmful.

At times, victims would be injected with drugs to help them become more cooperative, which leads to addiction, making the brothel their lifeline. Many fights it at first, but eventually accept they are in a losing battle from the beginning.

Together, with Friends of WPC Nepal, we can fight against human trafficking by spreading awareness.

Learn how WPC cuts trafficking off at the source and educates the Nepali community











Each March on International Women’s Day, our safe home participates in a march against domestic violence and trafficking.

The adoption of the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children in 2000 by the United Nations General Assembly marked a significant milestone in international efforts to stop human trafficking. 124 countries have criminalized human trafficking in line with the UN Trafficking Protocol, and 96 have developed National Action Plans (NAPs) to coordinate the government’s response. A total of 150 governments provide some forms of services for victims.

The UK Government has enacted the Modern Slavery Act (2015), which works to stop slavery, servitude, forced labor, human trafficking and provides protection for victims. Singapore enacted anti-trafficking legislation, which strengthened provisions to be more in line with international standards. In Tanzania, the implementation of existing legislation has been strengthened also. The training for police in relation to human trafficking was incorporated into the police academy training curriculum.

Not only has criminalization of human trafficking has made progress, but protection for victims has also improved in some countries. In Jordan, the government provides specialized services for trafficking victims through a shelter for gender-based violence. Peru’s Ministry for Women and Vulnerable Populations also established a shelter for child trafficking victims. In Armenia, the Law on Identification and Assistance to Victims of Human Trafficking and Exploitation was approved and came into force in June 2015.

Besides these steps, a few countries take active steps to learn from survivors’ experiences, either in relation to receiving victim support or as participants in the criminal justice system. The United States offers an exception to this rule and provides a model for survivor leadership. There is also a national network of over 200 survivors who meet regularly to work on strategic advocacy at the local and national levels.

Source: The Global Slavery Index 2016, Walk Free Foundation