Exhibit 5: Sex trafficking
“Sex trafficking is human trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation, including sexual slavery. A victim is forced, in one of a variety of ways, into a situation of dependency on their trafficker(s) and then used by said trafficker(s) to give sexual services to customers.”
“Sex trafficking is a modern-day form of slavery in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act is under the age of 18 years.”
https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/f … icking.pdf
they are rented out for sex for as little as 15 minutes at a time, dozens of times a day. Sometimes they are sold outright to other traffickers and sex rings, victims and experts say. These sex slaves earn no money, there is nothing voluntary about what they do and if they try to escape they are often beaten and sometimes killed.
Mexican officials see sex trafficking as a U.S. problem. If there wasn’t such a large demand, then people — trafficking victims and migrants alike — wouldn’t be going up there.
The average age of induction into sex trafficking is 13, although Cassandra Ma â€” whose organization Reclaim 13â€™s name stems from that age â€” said sheâ€™d encountered victims as young as 9 years old.
Human trafficking is a business with supply and demand: The supply is the victims, and the demand is the customers.
But who are the customers?
When it comes to youth, itâ€™s a myth that the creepy pervert living under the bridge is buying our youth for sex. â€œJohnâ€� is employed and living next door to you.
This project began with a question: Who buys a 15-year-old child for sex?
The answer: Many otherwise ordinary men. They could be your co-worker, doctor, pastor or spouse.
â€œTheyâ€™re in all walks of life,â€� a 17-year-old survivor from the Midwest, trafficked when she was 15, said about the more than 150 men who purchased her in a month. â€œSome could be upstanding people in the community. It was mostly people in their 40s, living in the suburbs, who were coming to get the stuff they were missing.â€�
In a room full of sex buyers, enrolled in a court-ordered program in Seattle, I asked: â€œDo you ever think about the life stories of the girls and women you purchased?â€�
The men appeared uncertain about how to answer. Then a former once-a-week buyer, arrested for attempting to purchase sex from a police officer posing as a 15-year-old girl, said, â€œI donâ€™t want to know how the sausage is made.â€�
A piece of meat. A commodity to be consumed.
Not a child. Not a life.
Much of the discussion on sex trafficking is on addressing the supply. But the root of the problem is demand, which there is very little discussion about. Why do people not want to talk about this? Because it is the normal, ordinary people who are buying children for sex. They come from all walks of life and from every segment of society.