skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 252023 Find in a Library
Title: Knowing the Signs of Youth Sex Trafficking
Date Published: October 2017
Page Count: 5
Sponsoring Agency: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Washington, DC 20531
Sale Source: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
US Dept of Justice
810 Seventh Street NW
Washington, DC 20531
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Instructional Material; Report (Grant Sponsored); Report (Technical Assistance)
Format: Document; Document (Online)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The purpose of this paper is to outline the signs that a youth has been trafficked for commercial sex, how this can be prevented, and how to help them.
Abstract: In describing the nature of trafficking for commercial sex, the paper indicates that youth and adults are trafficked by “pimps,” who victimize them with violent control and sexual exploitation. Traffickers remain hidden from police while victims are visible targets for arrest and criminal justice involvement. Some physical and behavioral signs of trafficking victimization are injuries from physical abuse, malnourishment and poor health, submissiveness or fear, anxiety about police contact, and speech that appears scripted or rehearsed. Information is also provided on sex trafficking as a distinctive subculture that includes a distinctive vocabulary, specific rules in sex trafficking situations, and social controls related to behaviors and attitudes in interactions with others. Examples are provided of the cultural characteristics of trafficking in commercial sex. Questions to ask a person one suspects is involved in trafficked commercial sex are suggested as a means of confirming the suspicion. When one has reasonable certainty that a person is being trafficked for commercial sex, this paper suggests actions that might be taken to help the person, being careful not to make their situation worse or more dangerous. Suggestions include contacting 911 for services; determining appropriate community resources to which victims may be referred, such as hotlines and services for crime victims; and providing food and shelter.
Main Term(s): Juvenile victims
Index Term(s): Crime prevention measures; Crime specific countermeasures; Juvenile prostitution; OJJDP grant-related documents; OJJDP Resources; Prostitution causes; Trafficking in Persons; Victim services
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.