Human Trafficking by the Numbers

World Wide:

  • 27 million people are trafficked around the globe.
  • 23 million of these souls live in countries where trafficking is LEGAL!
  • Trafficking is the third largest growing industry in the world!
  • $32 billion is earned through the trafficking of people in the global market per year.
  • 1 million children enter the sex trade every year!  That equals 30 million children during the last 30 years!
  • 2.2 million children are trafficked every year.
  • More people are trafficked today than at the height of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade. Every three seconds someone is trafficked.
  • 99% of those trafficked into Europe end up in the sex industry as slaves.
  • Only 1% of those trafficked are rescued from slavery.

United States

  • 14,500 to 17,500 slaves are imported into the United States each year.
    It is the second biggest problem in the U.S. (drug trafficking is number one, weapons trafficking is number three).
  • Minors as young as 12 years old are recruited into the sex trade industry.
  • The average life expectancy of a trafficked person is three to seven years from the time he or she is trafficked.
  • Victims may be forced to service seven to fifteen men per night, earning pimps $200-$1,000 per slave per day.


  • “C” is the grade given to Pennsylvania’s state laws and legislature regarding treatment and services for rescued victims of the slave trade.
  • PA has no laws that provide or mandate protective provisions for sexually exploited children.
  • PA has only a five-year statute of limitation from the date of the crime during which a victim may speak out against their trafficker.


  • Four years ago human trafficking was virtually non-existent in our region. Two years ago there were 15 known centers for trafficking.
  • Today there are 36 known brothels and places of human trafficking in the Greater Pittsburgh area.
  • Six of these trafficking dens are in Pittsburgh’s suburbs and surrounding neighborhoods.

Sources: Polaris Project; United Nations; Global Outlook, Center for Research on Globalism; UNICEF; SWPAAHTC
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