Organizations that work to end human trafficking have identified a number of signs that may point to human trafficking:
> The person is not allowed to speak for themselves and their activities are controlled by someone else.
> The person is under 18 and involved in prostitution or sex work.
> The person is unpaid or paid very little to work, and seems to be treated poorly (long or unusual hours, not allowed breaks, forced to live in poor conditions, etc.).
> The person is repaying a large debt through labour or sex..
> The person seems fearful, anxious, depressed, submissive, tense, or nervous/paranoid. They may avoid eye contact, seem fearful around police, etc.
> The person shows signs of abuse, such as bruising, cigarette burns, fractures, etc.
> The person has tattooing or branding symbols, particularly names.
> The person doesn’t have their own things or money, and doesn’t control their own passport or other documents.
> The person seems malnourished or lacks medical care.
> The person is moved frequently and may not know their surroundings well.
> The person has been reported missing.
> Most people who are trafficked for sex are women and girls, but boys, men and people who are LGBTQ’S are also targeted.
> The age of recruitment is as low as 12 or 13.
> Homeless and marginalized youth are targeted by sex traffickers.
> Youth who struggle with low self-esteem, bullying, discrimination, poverty, abuse, isolation and other social or family issues may be targeted.
> Indigenous women and girls are especially likely to be trafficked.
> Addiction, mental health issues and developmental disabilities are also risk factors.
While doing surveillance on a pimp during a human trafficking investigation, Durham Regional Police Services (DRPS) noticed these pimps are out without a question actively recruiting in public places that our family members go to and frequent on a regular basis.
Common recruitment locations
> Group homes
> Bus Stops
> Parties at Hotels
> On-line social media