Would you like an overview of human trafficking in America? Would you like a report that manages to be not only comprehensive, but also brief? And that has the most recently available information and statistics?
Jeff Keith from Guardian Group has an answer for you. He and his colleagues designed the 15-page report, 2019 Human Trafficking in America, and according to Keith, they did it, “To create a tool that enables people to get information in one place without having to seek it out. We sourced it from well-done research projects and then added to it our own analysis of the problem based on 10 years of experience.”
He goes on to say, “Our goal was to make it human and personal, and not just about statistics. We wanted to avoid ‘paralysis by analysis,’ where you get so many statistics that you take away the person behind it. This report isn’t just statistics, it’s about someone’s loved one, or maybe a community member.”
Keith also had another goal. “We wanted to re-educate people and show people what’s really happening. People may watch the movie Taken or Pretty Woman, and think that’s how it happens here, but typically that’s not the case.”
To get a feeling of how different trafficking is likely to be from what you see in those two movies, read this quote from page 4 of the report:
“The pimp/traffickers monitor social media or dating sites for potential victims. They look for a vulnerability or a problem they can solve. Posting “my mom is the worst” on your Facebook page offers a predator the opportunity to swoop in and become the victim’s hero. They may also recruit victims at places teens hang out such as: parks, malls or outside shelters for runaway and homeless youth. Pimp/traffickers view humans as a product to be sold.”
In creating this report, Guardian Group members wanted not only awareness, they wanted impact. Keith is pleased to report that already there have been amazing impacts.
“For example,” Keith says, “within a few weeks of a training session where a lot of the information in the report was communicated at a local hospital, members of the staff in the Emergency Department experienced a truly impactful result.”
Keith goes on to explain that shortly after the training session, there was a motor vehicle accident that occurred. The woman that was in the car accident had to be put on an automatic 24-hour hold due to her injuries. During that time a nurse and social worker both noticed several red flags.
- The young woman’s story changed various times.
- She would not make eye contact.
- She was very afraid of the man that had been driving the car.
The hospital staff notified Law Enforcement and a multiple jurisdictional trafficking case was opened. The young woman was returned safely to her family.
Keith believes that the more people who read this report, the more impact it will have. To download a .pdf of 2019 Human Trafficking in America, go to Guardiangroup.org, click on Community under the Training tab, and then scroll down to Human Trafficking In America Report.