“You may choose to look the other way but you can never say again that you did not know.”
Statistics for human trafficking are all over the board as we know the crime is largely underreported and only estimates can be made on the total tally of individuals impacted by trafficking and exploitation. A long-held statistic shares that women and girls make up a “disproportionate” number of victims. Yet we know and are only learning more that men and boys face the same vulnerabilities as women and girls: income, housing and job insecurities; abuse; and domestic violence.
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime in 2012 estimated that men accounted for 25 percent of trafficking victims globally. The Global Report on Trafficking in Persons stated that 27 percent of all victims detected globally were children, and that of those, one in three victims were boys.
Even this number is admittedly low because many male victims are unwilling to speak out about their abuse due to fear and shame. When we talk about it as a female only issue and create feminine imagery around the issue, it can lead to a disassociation between their abuse and exploitation and trafficking. Like many female survivors we hear from, males do not know they are being trafficked as it is happening. They might not even associate their problem with trafficking after hearing a female victim predominant prevention presentation.
Help us increase community awareness of the realities of every individual who has been impacted by human trafficking.
Hear Nathan Earl, Principal at Giant Slayer Consulting and a Master of Public Health Candidate at Yale University share on Keloland Living the additional pressures males impacted by trafficking face in stepping forward. Nathan leverages more than 20 years of lived and professional experience to help organizations and communities respond to violence against boys and male-identifying individuals across the social-ecological framework. Nathan is committed to bringing awareness to the realities facing men and boys and working to increase services that serve them.
For more resources about male victims of human trafficking:
Human Trafficking Victims: Male Perspective
The Silenced Minority
The boy Victims of the Sex Trade