in the United States
by: Delana Forsyth
Many people don’t think about the sale of human beings happening right here in America. If we consider the possibility of human trafficking within our borders, our assumption may be that it’s confined to Las Vegas, New York, Los Angeles, and other large cities. Even those who recognize that human trafficking is as much an American disgrace as an international one sometimes don’t realize this crime doesn’t just occur in our big cities.Although human trafficking has certainly been discovered in large urban areas, it can flourish in upper-class suburbs, rural areas, and even in small towns like the one lived.
Human trafficking happens in upper-middle-class neighborhoods where people who travel or do business internationally “invest” in domestic help, who upon arrival in America can become modern slaves.
In search of a cost-effective workforce, resort communities, hotels, and country clubs sometimes unknowingly hire agencies that are actually fronts for slave labor.
In places where regular conferences are held- including but not limited to political and business conferences- as well as at large sporting events, sex-trafficked individuals are made available because traffickers know there are consumers with money who buy them.
That’s why whenever I am presented with a reasonable (and sometimes, I must confess, not completely reasonable) opportunity to enlighten folks about the modern day slavery that’s happening all around us, i take it, because i know the extent to which this problem permeates our land. its prominence here makes sense if you think about it. Human trafficking follows money. America, being the richest nation in the world, stands to reward human traffickers with some of the highest profits anywhere.
Native America; Human Trafficking in Native Communities
Since the Presidential Proclamation of 2010, we have annually observed January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking prevention Month. Despite all the media attention and many worthy organizations fighting this problem, there are still over 40 million slaves in the world today. Women and girls account for 71% of those victims.
Before the colonization of the U.S., Native Americans held women in high regard as life bearers and the future of their people. They were the political, spiritual and ceremonial leaders and violence against women was*is) forbidden.
From all of us at RAINN, we wish you and your loved ones a joyous holiday celebration. No matter where you are, who you’re with, or what you’re celebrating, we wish you safety, good health, and peace.
However, we also know that holidays can be particularly difficult for survivors of sexual violence. I’ve led the National Sexual Assault Hotline for almost three years at RAINN, and I know from that experience that many survivors are working through trauma and emotions brought on by the holidays.
So, if you are a survivor, or love a survivor, prioritize your mental health and reach out to the hotline if you need to talk. Please also share the National Sexual Assault Hotline information widely and help us spread the word that no one is alone this holiday season.
That’s what RAINN is here for. Our hotline runs 24/7/365 and we never turn anyone away. So if you need help or support in the coming days, call 800.656.HOPE (4673) or visit online.rainn.org for live chat options in English and rainn.org/es en Español.
Take care of yourself and each other, and I hope you are able to have a happy, safe, and fulfilling holiday.