Human trafficking

At any given time in 2016, an estimated 40.3 million people are in modern slavery, including 24.9 in forced labour and 15.4 million in forced marriage. It means there are 5.4 victims of modern slavery for every 1,000 people in the world. 1 in 4 victims of modern slavery are children. Out of the  24.9 million people trapped in forced labour, 16 million people are exploited in the private sector such as domestic work, construction or agriculture; 4.8 million persons in forced sexual exploitation, and 4 million persons in forced labour imposed by state authorities. Women and girls are disproportionately affected by forced labour, accounting for 99% of victims in the commercial sex industry, and 58% in other sectors.

Source: Global Estimates of Modern Slavery: Forced Labour and Forced Marriage, Geneva, September 2017.

Trafficking plays an important role in exploitation
People are reported to be trafficked from 137 countries to be exploited in their own or other countries, affecting every continent and every type of economy. A total of 63.251 victims were detected in 106 countries and territories between 2012 and 2014. Some 42% of detected victims were trafficked domestically, meaning 58% of the victims cross at least one border.

  • 16% of the detected trafficking victims originated from East Asia and the Pacific;
  • 11% from South-Eastern Europe;
  • 9% from North and Central America and the Caribbean;
  • 8% from sub-Saharan Africa;
  • and 5% from Central Europe.

  • 51% of the victims are women, 28% of the victims are children (of which the majority -71%- are girls); 21% are men, but this number is rising.
  • 54% of the victims are used for forced commercial sexual exploitation, of which 96% are women and girls.
  • 38% of the victims are used for forced labour, of whom 63% were men.
  • Other forms of exploitation are organ removal (82% men), sham or forced marriage or begging (76% women and girls).
  • 95% of victims experienced physical or sexual violence during trafficking (based on data from selected European countries).
  • Many trafficking victims have at least middle-level education.

Source: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) – Global report on trafficking in persons (2016)

Migration is a great indicator for human trafficking.