January is Human Trafficking Awareness Month. As a founding member of the Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force, the Maryland U.S. Attorney’s Office pledges to continue to combat human trafficking by working with our partners to investigate and prosecute traffickers and rescue victims. The Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force is a collaborative effort of trafficking survivors, social workers, community organizers, medical professionals, law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and citizen volunteers dedicated to eradicating human trafficking and providing support, treatment, and resources for human trafficking survivors. Our communities, including the vulnerable victims who are the targets of traffickers, benefit greatly from awareness of the types of human trafficking; indicators of human trafficking; and resources available to survivors of human trafficking. Human trafficking is defined as using force, fraud, or coercion to obtain labor or engage in commercial sex acts. Often, traffickers make false promises of a job or pose as benefactors to lure their victims and force them into human trafficking. Although human trafficking is usually associated with commercial sex, labor trafficking is just as prominent. Forced labor is a category of human trafficking in which individuals are coerced into legitimate and illegitimate industries, including domestic service, massage parlors, agriculture, restaurants, hotels, and manufacturing sweatshops. According to the U.S. […]
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