According to the U.S. Department of State Trafficking in Persons Report (2010), there are approximately 14,500 to 17,500 people trafficked to America each year. The vast majority of these people are women and children. In October of 2000, the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Act of 2000 (22 U.S.C. 7101) was passed in order to “combat trafficking in persons, especially into the sex trade, slavery, and involuntary servitude, to reauthorize certain Federal programs to prevent violence against women, and for other purposes.”

The cold truth is that these people are treated as mere commodities and traded or used in whatever fashion their captors can make the most money. This often means working in the sex industry in “professions” such as prostitution,  mail order marriage, or sex workers. Another common “profession” for these women is forced laborers in various industries, which often results in labor, health, and human rights violations. Often these women’s only offense is the desire for a better life. Traffickers target poverty-stricken and uneducated women by coercing them with the promise of work in America as maids or nannies.  As these women are virtually cut off from their families, friends and home, they have no way out of this modern-day slavery. Children are also targeted for these reasons but they also face another threat: adoption. The underground adoption markets consists of  people who want to adopt but are unwilling to undergo legitimate adoptive programs. The children are often stolen or coerced from their families and homes and brought to America being sold to adoptive families. According to the United Nations,  Mexico is the number one “supply center” for children brought to the United States for this purpose.

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