Human Trafficking

WHAT IS HUMAN TRAFFICKING?

Human Trafficking involves the exploitation of people through force, coercion, threat, fraud or deception and may include acts generally defined as human rights abuses. Victims may be forced into labour, prostitution, or some other form of servitude. They may be forced to give up their home to drug dealers and gang members. Human Trafficking victims may be bound to their abusers through debt and may be forced into labour or prostitution to pay off that debt.  A more thorough definition of human trafficking is provided by the Government of Canada's Department of Justice here.

TYPES OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING

SEX TRAFFICKING DOMESTIC SERVITUDE FORCED LABOUR ORGAN TRAFFICKING
Victims are manipulated or forced to engage in sex acts for someone else’s commercial gain. Victims are forced to work in isolation and are hidden in plain sight as nannies, housekeepers or domestic help. Victims are compelled to work for little or no pay, often manufacturing or growing the products we use and consume. Victims are lured and recruited through debt bondage, and organs are forcibly removed to sell on the black market.

All human trafficking has victims/survivors; people who become compromised and forced into doing work they would not otherwise do. It’s a cycle of abuse, where the victim is often groomed, then exploited. You can learn how to recognize signs of human trafficking in friends and family and help them to get out.

NEED HELP?

Keep scrolling for resources to help you, or a loved one, escape human trafficking. Our Human Trafficking investigators are here to help, but we understand you may not be ready for police involvement. Below you’ll also find non-police resources.

ARE YOU BEING TARGETED/ EXPLOITED?

Traffickers use, abuse and control their victims. Victims often fear of police, but can seek their help if they ever feel they are in danger. You may become or already be a victim of human trafficking if you answer yes to any of these questions:

  • Is anyone controlling your freedom of movement?
  • Is someone denying you access to your passport or travel documents?
  • Is anyone telling you to perform sex acts?
  • Is anyone forcing you to work for no or very little money?
  • Are you forced to work long hours without proper breaks?

If you need police assistance call 684-1239. Or click the "Get Help" button below to connect discreetly with a Human Trafficking investigator. 

NOT READY TO TALK TO POLICE?

Victims may be scared to speak to police, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t help. Various non-police agencies are available to assist victims of human trafficking.

The Thunder Bay Victim Services is a community response program providing immediate on-site service to victims of crime or disasters. With the consent of a victim, emergency services request a team of trained volunteers to provide on-site, short-term assistance to victims and offer referrals to community agencies for longer-term assistance. For help from Victims Services call (807) 684-1051

For more information about non-police resources please hit the button below to connect to the Thunder Bay Coalition to End Human Trafficking. 

DO YOU KNOW THE SIGNS?

Understanding the signs of human trafficking may be your best tool to help a loved one escape it. Keep scrolling and learn more.

VICTIMS HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT

Human Trafficking targets the community’s most marginalized and vulnerable. Victims may be young runaways, suffer from addictions, or have a history of being abused. They may not identify as victims and distrust outsiders.  They are often afraid to come forward for fear their abuser will harm them or their family. 

Human Trafficking victims are often unable to ask for help, and that’s why they need yours. Following are some signs that a person has become a victim of human trafficking (Please note: possible signs mentioned below are indicators to watch for, but does not confirm the person is involved in prostitution/forced labour):

SIGNS OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING

Person is always monitored
Person is always controlled by someone else
Person is always being moved, usually from hotel to hotel
Drug use, addiction
Multiple cell phones

Person does not carry any form of identification with them

Visible signs of scarring/tattoos (known as branding)
Emergencies
9-1-1
Non-Emergencies
807-684-1239

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