Human trafficking is not an underdeveloped country problem. This is a human rights issue that affects people everywhere and all over the United States. It is important that victims are aware that they have legal options available. In 2000, Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA). Its purpose is to combat trafficking of persons through prevention and prosecution. However, TVPA also allows civil litigation.
Holding Companies Responsible Who Endanger You
Civil lawsuits can not only be brought against traffickers but also any establishment who looked the other way when you were in trouble.
Hotels and Motels
The most common businesses that know about trafficking, yet do nothing to help victims are hotels and motels. Victims often summon courage to get help but are often ignored.
According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) , hotels account for almost 75% of the most common trafficked places. Sex traffickers may force victims to stay in a hotel or motel room and receive customers or send victims to a room rented by a customer. Employees should recognize the clear signs of a trafficked victim:
- Abuse signs
- Poor hygiene
- Avoiding eye contact
- Revealing clothing
- No luggage
- Staying for weeks at a time
- Using side entrances
- Too many individuals in one room
- Constant male foot traffic
Responsible hotel or motel training should inform employees how to identify these signs and establish a strict protocol to stopping trafficking at their establishment. Other hospitality hotspots are resorts, casinos, nightclubs, and convention centers.
Truck stops are another popular hub of sex trafficking. Places like Flying J, Pilot, Love’s and Travel Centers of America often have truckers wanting to pay for sex. Traffickers know this and put victims at these places to get money at their expense. These companies need to ensure that areas are well-lit and employees are educated on warning signs. These include nervous individuals who are not truckers, the same faces coming and going in the same vehicle and no luggage.
Sex trafficking has become modern. These people use social media and online listing sites to lure victims. These websites include Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, CraigsList and even dating websites like Tinder or PlentyOfFish. Traffickers will troll these sites looking for minors and younger women. There should be more measures in place to help victims.
With human, sex and labor trafficking, The Michael Brady Lynch Firm have resources and relationships that can help victims. Many do not realize there are legal protections available. Trafficking victims feel as though if they come forward the law will be against them. This is especially true for those who may not have work visas. No one should be a victim of trafficking. We know how sensitive this is, therefore we hold confidentiality to the strictest of compliances. Your consultation is free and confidential. Call today for more information on how we can help bring you the justice you deserve.