Sex Trafficking* in the United States is a serious issue. Lack of awareness is an enormous hurdle, and creating awareness is the first step The Robbed of Beauty Project aims to achieve.
Some alarming statistics:
• In 2009, a University of Pennsylvania study estimated nearly 300,000 youth in the United States were at risk of being sexually exploited for commercial uses – “most of them runaways or thrown-aways,” said Ernie Allen, president of the NCMEC.
• Almost 300,000 American children are at risk for trafficking into the sex industry. (U.S. Dept of State)
• There are girls as young as 5 and 6 years old in the U.S. that are forced to do sexual acts for economic gain by their pimp (USDOJ)
• There is a severe lack of protective shelter for victims
• 1.2 million children are being trafficked every year; this is in addition to the millions already held captive by trafficking (UNICEF)
*In the United States, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA), as amended by the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015 (JVTA), defines sex trafficking as “recruiting, harboring, transporting, providing, obtaining, patronizing, or soliciting of an individual through the means of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of commercial sex”.