Human traffickers prey on some of the most vulnerable members of society, exploiting them for sex, labor, and servitude. A heinous crime, human trafficking destroys families and shatters lives.
There is no single profile of a trafficking victim, but regardless of their background, a common denominator among all victims is some form of vulnerability. In the United States specifically, some of the most highly vulnerable populations include undocumented workers, runaway and homeless youth, individuals with substance abuse or addiction issues, and low-income individuals.
Human trafficking is a crime that can happen anywhere. Federal prosecutions have verified human trafficking crimes in all 50 states, as well as two U.S. territories.
Human traffickers can also be anyone, including organized crime syndicates, gangs, family members, and business owners.
The President's Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons and the Senior Policy Operating Group work year-round to address the many aspects of human trafficking both in the United States and around the world. These agencies have helped to launch a training and technical assistance center aimed at enhancing the public health response to human trafficking and a new program to address the housing needs of victims.
Additionally, the National Institute of Justice, through the funding of rigorous research, is working to advance understanding of the nature and extent of human trafficking; how to improve the detection, investigation, and prosecution of traffickers; and how to address the needs of victims and provide needed services.
Visit the following pages for additional information and resources produced or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs and other federal agencies: