Back in 2009, it was estimated that trafficking of humans brought in $32,000,000,000 annually with the illegal sale of women, men, and children. (1) 32 BILLION. What a staggering number. Can you imagine that number? Can you imagine what we could do to end worldwide poverty with that amount of money?
But it is used for the sale of human beings. Want to know what is more staggering?
That number has grown. Not by a little. I mean even a 5% raise would be huge - $1,600,000,000. But it didn't rise by 5%. Or even 50%. Not even 100%. It EXPLODED. It is estimated that the profits from this "industry" has increased THREE HUNDRED SIXTY EIGHT PERCENT. (2) That's right. 368%. So while America's (and other countries') economy(ies) has(have) gotten a little unstable over the last several years, people have found the money for trafficking. For further demoralizing the poor, for further degrading those who need our hand up not their hands shackled.
Human trafficking now generates $150,000,000,000 in illegal profits annually. (3) It is on the rise. It is not going away.
Think on that.
Don't feel compelled to act?
If it continues like this, if it continues to explode by 368% every four years, that is another increase of $552,000,000,000. It would be over a $700 billion illegal industry by 2017.
I can only imagine that with the profits exploding that the number of victims has done the same. We cannot keep turning a blind eye. There aren't an endless number of human beings in this world. One day, if this doesn't stop, each of us will be personally affected by this. Our sponsored child, someone we met on a mission trip abroad, our neighbor, our friend, our daughter. We aren't immune to this in America.
We need to pray.
Then after praying, if you feel compelled to physically do something, please check out a website for many of the agencies that help rescue those who are trafficked or prevent trafficking. Here are a few of my faves, but there are many more.
A21 - http://www.thea21campaign.org
Not For Sale - http://www.notforsalecampaign.org/
Abolition International - http://abolitioninternational.org/
International Justice Mission - http://www.ijm.org/
Justice Generation - http://www.justice-generation.com/
Out of Darkness - http://www.outofdarkness.org/
Polaris Project - http://www.polarisproject.org/index.php
Project Rescue - http://projectrescue.com/
Please pray. Pray nonstop. Pray for these lives. Pray that this will stop.
It doesn't do any good to know, then do nothing about it. And you can't un-know.
1. Keen, Laura. "Human Trafficking is on the Rise." notforsalecampaign.org. Not For Sale, June 24, 2014