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Report: ‘Significant' increase in human trafficking cases in 2016

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Posted at 8:19 AM, Jan 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-31 10:19:41-05

DENVER – The National Human Trafficking Hotline saw a sizeable increase in the number of calls and reported cases of trafficking in 2016, according to a new report from Polaris.

In Colorado, the hotline took 391 calls and 120 reports of human trafficking. That’s up from 315 calls and 78 cases in 2015.

The numbers don’t necessarily reflect the actual number of trafficking cases, just those that are reported to the hotline.

The hotline tracks two types of trafficking: Sex trafficking and labor trafficking. Victims of sex trafficking are forced into sex work against their will, while labor trafficking involves other types of work, such as agriculture and domestic work.

The majority of trafficking cases in Colorado last year were sex trafficking. The hotline took 21 reports of labor trafficking. Most cases of human trafficking involve adult women, but Polaris said 24 of Colorado’s cases in 2016 involved minors.

Nationwide, the hotline took reports of 7,572 cases of human trafficking last year, up from 5,961 cases in 2015.

You’ll find more in-depth statistics at polarisproject.org.

If you’re a victim of trafficking or know someone who is, you can make a confidential report by calling the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888. Operators speaking several languages are available around the clock. You can also make a report by sending a text message to “BeFree” (233733) between 3 p.m. and 11 p.m. ET.

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