New Stats in Trafficking in Persons Report 2010

Trafficking in Persons Report 2010

Human Trafficking Statistics

Operating in the shadows, below the radar of most of the public and much of law enforcement, the world of human trafficking is not easily quantified. There is no question on the census asking, How many slaves in this household? Human trafficking organizations don’t submit annual head counts to the government. But as nations around the world slowly begin to recognize the consequences of human trafficking — whether to their own citizens or to the reputations of their governments — a clearer picture of the size and extent of this cancer of civilization is emerging.

Perhaps the best source of information is the United States Department of State annual Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report. The latest TIP Report, the 10th annual such report, provides a comprehensive (373 pages) compilation of numbers, figures, and facts. To the uninitiated, it is almost unbelievable. To those engaged in the fight against human trafficking, the report is at once staggering in the challenges it reveals while simultaneously offering hope in the face of a growing number of governments, non-government organizations, and men and women of goodwill who are committing themselves to ending the scourge of modern day slavery.

The 2010 Trafficking in Persons Report can be viewed in its entirety here.

For a quick look at some of the report’s information, we provide the following:


  • 12,300,000: Adults and children in forced or bonded labor, or forced prostitution worldwide
  • 2,000,000: Children subjected to prostitution in the global commercial sex trade
  • 49,105: Total victims identified worldwide (i.e., only 0.4% of estimated human trafficking victims have been identified)
  • 4,166: Successful trafficking prosecutions in 2009
  • 335: Successful forced labor prosecutions
  • 62: Countries that have never convicted a human trafficker under laws in compliance with the United Nation’s Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons adopted in 2000
  • 1.8 per 1,000 persons worldwide are human trafficking victims
  • 3 per 1,000 persons in Asia and the Pacific are trafficking victims


Over the past 15 years, ‘trafficking in persons’ or ‘human trafficking’ have been used as umbrella terms for activities involved when one person obtains or holds another person in compelled service. The Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) describes this compelled service using a number of different terms: involuntary servitude, slavery, debt bondage, and forced labor.

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The TVPA defines ‘severe forms of trafficking’ as:

a. sex trafficking in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud, or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such an act has not attained 18 years of age; or,

b. the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision, or obtaining of a person for labor or services, through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage, or slavery.

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“A victim need not be physically transported from one location to another in order for the crime to fall within these definition.”

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“Recent studies show the majority of human trafficking in the world takes the form of forced labor. The ILO estimates that for every trafficking victim subjected to forced prostitution, nine people are forced to work.”


The 2010 list of countries identified as hosting governmental armed forces or government supported armed groups that recruit and use child soldiers in defiance of the Child Soldiers Prevention Act of 2008 (CSPA) include:

1. Burma

2. Chad

3. Democratic Republic of the Congo

4. Somalia

5. Sudan

6. Yemen

Check back here after June 2011 when we will post the 2011 Trafficking in Persons Report!

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