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How do you Talk About Human Trafficking?

Whenever the term ‘human trafficking’ comes up in a conversation, one is bound to think about the glorified movie scenes where a person is being kidnapped. In reality, it is not a typical trafficking situation. Most kids and adults fail to identify the common warning signs and how to guard themselves. 

Since such topics are rarely discussed casually, they remain unaware of the types of trafficking and ways to protect them. Plus, there are several myths surrounding human trafficking and how it happens. As a parent, guardian, or caretaker, it is important to discuss this frightening issue with the children and teenagers. 

About Human Trafficking 

Human trafficking is a crime that involves trading a human for compelled labor, sexual slavery, or commercial sexual acts. Moreover, traffickers use coercion, fraud, or deception to exploit the victims for profit. They use violence, manipulation, false promises, and romantic relationships to lure victims into trafficking situations.

Further, victims can be of any race, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, gender identity, and socioeconomic status. Similar to other crimes, human traffickers prey upon children and vulnerable individuals with financial stability and no social safety net.

How do you Talk About Human Trafficking?

Educators, parents, and caretakers should weave such unsettling topics into daily discussions and casual conversations. Have transparent and open conversations about human trafficking speakers with children, adolescents, and teenagers. First off, bust myths and misconceptions and help them learn key human trafficking indicators.

Discuss Exploitation – Most children and teenagers fail to identify exploitative situations that often lead to trafficking. Mostly, human traffickers exploit or take advantage of vulnerable individuals with financial hardship. Hence, children and teenagers should know what exploitation may look like.

For instance, it can be false promises of high-paying jobs or romantic relationships with controlling partners. Importantly, center your conversation around what a healthy relationship looks like. Educate them that the right partner would respect their privacy, ask for their consent, and never physically harm them.

Moreover, be wary of jobs that sound too good to be true, especially in fields like acting and modeling. Common false job promises involve high salaries and requesting personal information and substantial registration fee.

Protective Factors Discuss ways to guard against common warning signs to prevent themselves from being exploited. Encourage youngsters to build and maintain good relationships with their family and peers. Moreover, encourage them to seek assistance whenever they experience exploitation or dangerous situations.

Teach them to not fear how society will view them and let go of the shame and guilt attached to what they have been through.

Use Casual Language – Just because educators are discussing a frightening topic does not mean they have to use crime-specific, victimizing, or textbook language. Use casual, empowering language that highlights their strengths and capabilities. Moreover, crime-specific language may make the children tune out and lose interest. 

Answer Questions 

Lastly, openly express your concerns about their safety and be prepared to answer questions. Further, do not hold back when answering questions, try to be honest and open about it.

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