There is no profile of a victim of human trafficking. It could be you. It could be me. Estimates of victims vary widely according to the definitions used by the institutions carrying out research on human trafficking, and also due to the clandestine nature of the trade.
According to the International Labour Organization (ILO), 21 million victims of forced labor are estimated in the world today, of whom 11.4 million women and girls and 9.5 million men and boys. Almost 19 million victims are exploited by private individuals or enterprises and over 2 million by the state or rebel groups. Of those exploited by individuals or enterprises, 4.5 million are victims of forced sexual exploitation.
Forced labor in the private economy generates US$ 150 billion in illegal profits per year. Domestic work, agriculture, construction, manufacturing and entertainment are among the sectors most concerned. And migrant workers and indigenous people are particularly vulnerable to forced labor. According to United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), 700,000 to 2 million are trafficked across international borders annually. The US Department of State has estimated that 600,000 to 800,000 children, women and men are trafficked across international borders each year; approximately 80% of which are women and girls. UNICEF reports that across the world, there are over one million children entering the sex trade every year, and that approximately 30 million children have lost their childhood through sexual exploitation over the past 30 years.
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