Latest modern slavery fight updates -

US Trafficking Hotline Sees Spike from Texting

  • Published on
    December 19, 2018
  • News Source Image
  • Category:
    Human Trafficking, Rehabilitation & Liberation, Technology & Tools
Hero Banner

The addition of round-the-clock texting this year to the US National Trafficking Hotline has led to a sharp rise in the number of reported cases. DC anti-trafficking group Polaris operates the national hotline.

This does not mean that human trafficking is on the rise, or that prevalence of the crime is increasing, but rather that victims are finding it easier to seek help through texting.

“More and more people are knowing that there’s a resource available to them, and that they can get access to help,” said National Trafficking Hotline director Caroline Diemar. She expects the number of cases to hit 11,000 before year end.

Thomson Reuters Foundation reports:

The hotline added round-the clock texting this year, accounting for the increase, she said. The number of telephone calls was steady.

“We have seen texting to be a preferred method of communication for survivors,” she said.

Polaris does not provide public estimates of the number of potential human trafficking cases but says on its website that the number of cases it handles are “likely only a tiny fraction of the actual problem.”

The U.S. government said in a report this year that those most vulnerable to trafficking domestically include children in the welfare and court systems, runaways, American Indians, migrant and undocumented workers, people with disabilities and LGBT+ people.

Diemar explained the human trafficking is much like other hidden crimes in the United States.

“The more that it is spoken about and the more awareness that is brought to it, more and more cases are going to come to light,” she said.

From January through September of this year the national trafficking hotline received 8,700 reported cases — and increase of 1,700 compared to that same period in 2017.

The hotline will release its final 2018 report in the spring.


Freedom United is interested in hearing from our community and welcomes relevant, informed comments, advice, and insights that advance the conversation around our campaigns and advocacy. We value inclusivity and respect within our community. To be approved, your comments should be civil.

stop icon A few things we do not tolerate: comments that promote discrimination, prejudice, racism, or xenophobia, as well as personal attacks or profanity. We screen submissions in order to create a space where the entire Freedom United community feels safe to express and exchange thoughtful opinions.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

This week

Rounded up and abandoned: Europe’s covert support of migrant atrocities

It is well documented that inhumane immigration policies are forcing migrants to take extremely risky routes on their journey to seek asylum in Europe and globally. However, a year-long investigation by the Washington Post, Lighthouse Reports, and a consortium of international media outlets uncovered that migrant lives are not just at risk due to sketchy channel crossings and being packed in the back of refrigerator trucks. To dissuade sub-Saharan

| Wednesday May 22, 2024

Read more