Who does sexual trafficking affect?
Sexual exploitation through human trafficking is a crime that affects women, girls, trans and gender-diverse people more than others.
Some groups, like youth, people living with poverty, isolated people, and Indigenous people, can become more vulnerable to sexual trafficking. This is because these groups are seen by traffickers as having less supports and resources available to them:
“Some of the factors that make someone more vulnerable [to trafficking] are social (e.g., gender inequality, history of colonial exploitation, poverty, lack of access to education, restrictive immigration policies resulting in forced migration), economic (e.g., supply and demand for labour in many sectors, low risk – high reward for perpetrators), and political in nature (e.g., wars and other situations resulting in displaced persons/refugees). Results include increased economic vulnerability, isolation and forced displacement, all of which contribute to the push and pull factors underpinning human trafficking.” (The Learning Network. Trafficking at the Intersections: Racism, Colonialism, Sexism, and Exploitation in Canada. Learning Network Brief 36.)
Risk is created when you don’t have enough money to survive, a safe place to live, or a community that you are connected to.
People without these everyday kinds of supports are more likely to get trapped in jobs or relationships that are exploitative because they have few options.