Global crisis. Local threat.
Human trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. Every year, millions of men, women, and children are trafficked worldwide – including right here in the United States. It can happen in any community and victims can be any age, race, gender, or nationality.
The United States ranks as the 3rd highest in the world for reported cases of human trafficking. Florida ranks as the 3rd highest in the nation for reported cases of human trafficking. As a result of our proximity to Central and South America, its tourism and agricultural industries, high rates of youth homelessness and the opioid epidemic, South Florida is a hotbed for both sex and labor exploitation.
Human trafficking occurs in schools, places of worship, urban, suburban and rural communities, on the streets and online, hospitals, drug treatment facilities and homeless shelters. Anywhere there is a perceived or real imbalance of power, exploitation may occur.