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In this Wednesday, July 13, 2016 image taken from a Romanian Police handout video a chained man stands in the doorway of a house in the village of Berevoiesti, Romania. Dozens of vulnerable persons were kidnapped, chained up, whipped, fed scraps of food and forced into manual labor or fighting for entertainment over an eight-year period in rural southern Romania, prosecutors said Wednesday, with police rescuing three men and two boys aged 10-12 found chained up during searches at the homes of the suspects — members of an extended family.(DIICOT-Romanian Police via AP)

Hear the story of a human trafficking victim, one of nearly 4,000 in the US this year


Hear the story of a human trafficking victim, one of nearly 4,000 in the US this year

WATCH:  There have been 3,646 human trafficking cases reported in the United States this year. However, according to Polaris, that estimate could reach into the hundreds of thousands. Polaris is a nonprofit dedicated to combatting human trafficking. 

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Due to the secretive nature of trafficking, it's difficult to know exactly how many victims there are. This year's Trafficking in Persons Report Ceremony presented by Secretary of State John Kerry estimated there are 21 million worldwide. 

The worldwide estimate of the number of victims varies greatly, due to victims being kept quiet through fear of being reported for prostitution, and traffickers targeting poor and marginalized populations who don't have the resources to seek help.

Some estimates are as high as 30 million, according to the CNN Freedom Project

Sexual exploitation was noted as by far the most commonly identified form of human trafficking (79%) followed by forced labour (18%).
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

Human trafficking is broken down into two main categories: sexual exploitation, like prostitution, and forced labor. 

Traffickers also play into the narrative... threatening to call the police and report them for prostitution if they push back.
The Atlantic

According to the U.N. Office on Drug and Crime, only 1 out of 100 victims is ever rescued, a majority forced to remain silent through fear tactics. 

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