The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
The Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, which coordinates U.S. government activities in the global fight against contemporary forms of slavery, also assesses global trends, provides training and technical assistance, and advocates for an end to modern slavery.
The Department of Homeland Security
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is committed to combating human trafficking. Through public outreach, victim protections, and law enforcement training, DHS works diligently to prevent human trafficking before it occurs, to protect victims when it has occurred, and to minimize reoccurrence by conducting investigations to bring traffickers to justice.
Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS)
Rachel Lloyd, Executive Director and Founder of Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS), started the organization 15 years ago with only $30.00 in her pocket. Today it is one of the top leading non-profit groups in the United States to help combat sex trafficking, especially in New York. Rachel is a survivor of international sex trafficking where she was held emotionally and physically by her trafficker until a divine opportunity helped her to break free. Rachel says she met a woman with a church in Germany and before long, she was ready to give her life to God. In doing so, Rachel says she was not only able to break away, but it gave her strength to start GEMS. The organization is based off many things she received during the break away process from her trafficker, but also is based on many other things she did not receive. Over the last 15 years, Rachel has accomplished a lot. She published a book called, "Girls Like Us," co-produced a documentary about sex trafficking called, "Very Young Girls," and a few years ago, she received one of the world's most prestigious humanitarian awards through Reebok.
Her name is Rosa and she was just 13 years old when her life changed forever. She went from being a young waitress in a small Mexican village to being held captive as a prostitute and a slave.
It all started when a family acquaintance told Rosa that she could make 10 times as much money waiting tables in the United States as she could in her small village. It sounded like an offer that was too good to be true -- she could make enough money to send some back to her family, and if she got homesick, she could just pick up and come home.
Rosa's parents were skeptical, but she was persistent. Against the wishes of her family and friends, she agreed to make the journey to America in hope of a better life.
Rosa and several young girls were driven across the border, and then continued the rest of the way on foot. They traveled four days and nights through the desert, making their way into Texas, then crossing east toward Florida.
Finally, Rosa and the other girls arrived at their destination, a rundown trailer where they would be put to work. Rosa was told that she would be forced to work as a prostitute. For a young girl like Rosa, this was a nightmare -- but as she soon realized, she had to do what she was told or else.
The Polaris Project
The Polaris Project -- a non-profit organization dedicated to fighting all forms of human trafficking. The Polaris Project was founded in 2002 by two Brown University graduates, and is named after the North Star that guided slaves towards freedom along the Underground Railroad. John Walsh interviewed the Executive Director / CEO Bradley Myles about the issue of sex trafficking and what they are doing to fight the problem. Polaris Project operates the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) -- a national, toll-free anti-trafficking hotline, available to answer calls from anywhere in the country 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. Operators can take calls in over 170 languages. The mission of the NHTRC is to protect and serve victims of human trafficking in the United States. The NHTRC maintains a database of more than 3,200 contacts, including anti-trafficking organizations, legal service providers, shelters, coalitions, task forces, law enforcement, and social service agencies serving human trafficking victims.
The top three reported types of sex trafficking are:
1. Domestic Pimp-Control Trafficking
2. Asian Massage Parlors
3. Latino Residential Brothels
Shared Hope International
Shared Hope International exists to rescue and restore women and children in crisis. They are leaders in a worldwide effort to prevent and eradicate sex trafficking and slavery through education and public awareness.
Shared Hope's international prevention programs examine the conditions that allow women and children to be bought and sold and document the marketplace of victimization around the world. Shared Hope works to enhance awareness of modern day sexual slavery and builds international alliances to combat sex trafficking.