Zip ties on car mirrors. A man following a mom and child through a store. A child being watched at the bus stop. Trafficking is everywhere - even in our own backyards.
We see these warnings of human trafficking everywhere. So are they true?
Research on trafficking shows that only a very small percentage (approximately 3%) of victims are kidnapped. We do not want to discount the actual stories of this - it can happen. But it is not the typical storyline and, if it is all we talk about, many victims will be missed.
So if only a small percentage are kidnapped then how is trafficking happening? Statistics tells us that about 97% are trafficked by someone they know. That might be a family member or someone that has worked to earn their trust. A friend. A boyfriend. A trusted adult.
Based on this, yes, trafficking is happening in our own backyards. Literally. Just not in the way we see it portrayed in the media and viral posts.
So what can you do? Educate yourself. Educate others. Look for warning signs: A flow of cash or expensive items but no known job. A prepaid burner phone. Hypersexualized behavior. Secretive phone conversations or messages. All of these things could be outward signs.
At She’s Somebody’s Daughter, we believe that awareness is foundational. We want to give you truth to counter myths. Education leads to greater awareness. And greater awareness leads to action.