Someone watching?
Hit the ESC key at any time to hide this site. Privacy Tips
Call 1-844-762-8483
7NATIVE

Or Text 24/7

If you send a text, you will immediately receive a response notification that you will be texted back from a secondary number.
Standard text rates may apply.
Your information will be kept anonymous and confidential.

January Is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

Posted
by StrongHearts Native Helpline
In observance of January as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, StrongHearts Native Helpline encourages all Americans to reflect on the impact colonization had on slavery and human trafficking in America.

“It would be remiss to ignore the impact of colonization when Indigenous people were historically stalked, kidnapped and sold into slavery in the Americas and across the globe,” said Lori Jump, chief executive officer, StrongHearts Native Helpline. “Our women and children were targeted as sex slaves and we were seen as a commodity to be trafficked for profit.”

Today, slavery and human trafficking is an epidemic rooted in poverty and homelessness where marginalized people are often in need of food and shelter. The signs are hidden in plain sight and can be found in poor neighborhoods, on city streets, in homeless encampments and even under the guise of legitimate business.

Types of Trafficking and Abuse Tactics
Sex trafficking types include: prostitution, escort services, illicit massage, health and beauty, and pornography. Perpetrators use recruitment tactics that trick the victim into believing a proposition of marriage, a job offer, other false promises and fraud. To maintain control over their victims, perpetrators use abuse tactics such as:

  • Induce and exploit substance abuse
  • Physical and sexual abuse
  • Intimidation: weapon display or threat
  • Intimacy related emotional abuse

The Garden of Truth
In a Minnesota based study, “The Garden of Truth,” Native women, children and Two-spirit people were victimized more frequently because they are perceived to be easier targets and in many cases have already been exposed to abuse. In worse case scenarios, victims are born into a life of sex trafficking where rape and sex trafficking were normalized as a mode of survival.

“We see the contemporary ramifications of our history and the carrying forward the kinds of attitudes where Native women, youth and Two-spirit people are often targeted, particularly by white men and viewed as this is what you exist for,” said Christine Stark co-author of the Garden of Truth.

Statistically, victims of human trafficking are often plagued by homelessness, poverty and abuse which can also be identified as risk factors. In the Garden of Truth, victims revealed common experiences to include:

  • 99 percent were currently or previously homeless.
  • 92 percent had been raped and wanted to escape prostitution
  • 79 percent had been sexually abused as children by an average of 4 perpetrators.
  • 72 percent suffered traumatic brain injuries in prostitution.
  • 71 percent had symptoms of dissociation.
  • 52 percent had post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a rate equal to combat veterans.

“Post traumatic stress disorder can be debilitating and has the impact of freezing a moment in time for perpetuity,” Jump concluded. “In America, we need to acknowledge the truth about colonization and the impact it had on slavery and human trafficking. As Native people, we must speak our truth and resolve that we are so much more than what happened to us.”

Help Is Available
Call or text StrongHearts Native Helpline at 1-844-762-8483 or click on the chat icon for online chat advocacy. Advocates off peer support, crisis intervention, safety planning, referrals to Native-centered service providers, assistance locating healthcare facilities and crisis centers for survivors of sexual assault.

The National Human Trafficking Hotline supports victims and survivors by connecting them with services and supports to get help and stay safe. To contact the National Human Trafficking Hotline - call 1-888-373-7888. Text HELP or INFO to 233733.

SOURCE

  1. StrongHearts Native Helpline, “The High Risk of Human Trafficking,” https://strongheartshelpline.org/stories/high-risk-of-human-trafficking. Accessed December 23, 2022
  2. StrongHearts Native Helpline, “Human Trafficking” https://strongheartshelpline.org/abuse/human-trafficking. Accessed December 23, 2022.
  3. https://www.worldwithoutexploitation.org/bios/christine-stark. Accessed January 1, 2023.
Resources Resources

More from the press room....

Vital Funding Increases Culturally Appropriate Support and Advocacy
Love Languages For December
StrongHearts Receives $100,000 Giving Tuesday Grant from San Manuel Band of Mission Indians
StrongHearts Honors Native American Heritage Month
StrongHearts Announces New Positions
StrongHearts Native Helpline: Six Years of Evolution
ICWA Upheld By SCOTUS Despite Claims of Reverse Discrimination
StrongHearts Supports Family Violence Prevention and Services Improvement Act
StrongHearts Embraces Blue Campaign Partnership
StrongHearts Raises Elder Abuse Awareness
StrongHearts Celebrates Six Year Anniversary
StrongHearts Responds To Gun Violence
StrongHearts Stands With The Black Community
Women's Right To Safety Denied
Stalking Awareness Month Aims To Educate
Roe v. Wade: Our Work Is Not Done
StrongHearts Native Helpline Issues DVAM Statement
Impacts of the Roe v. Wade Decision
Two Donations Support StrongHearts Native Helpline
Showing Up in Support of Indigenous 2S+/LGBTQ+ Survivors for Pride Month
StrongHearts Native Helpline Publishes State Reports on Intimate Partner Violence Impacting Native Americans and Alaska Natives
StrongHearts Native Helpline Honors Our Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives on May 5
Supporting Indigenous Survivors and Advocates for Sexual Assault Awareness Month
StrongHearts Native Helpline Statement on the Violence Against Women Act of 2022
StrongHearts Native Helpline Observes Five-Year Anniversary with more than 20,000 Contacts
StrongHearts Native Helpline Welcomes Three Tribal Advocacy Programs
February Is Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
Joint Statement: Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month
Stalking Awareness Month Statement
StrongHearts Native Helpline Announces New Board of Directors
Native American Heritage Month 2021 Statement
StrongHearts Native Helpline Becomes Independent Organization
Joint Indigenous Organizations Statement About the Gabby Petito Case
Indigenous Advocacy Organizations Issue Joint Statement in Support of Survivors of Violence for Domestic Violence Awareness Month
StrongHearts Native Helpline Statement for 2021 Domestic Violence Awareness Month
StrongHearts Native Helpline Releases One Year Sexual Violence Advocacy Report
StrongHearts Native Helpline Launches Project in Michigan
Assistant Director Position Open at StrongHearts Native Helpline
StrongHearts Native Helpline Releases Chat Advocacy One-Year Report
Call for Justice is Answered by New MMIW Unit
Joint Statement: STANDING AS RELATIVES WITH INDIGENOUS SURVIVORS AND ADVOCATES FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT AWARENESS MONTH
StrongHearts Native Helpline Launches Text Advocacy
StrongHearts Native Helpline Marks Four Year Anniversary
StrongHearts Native Helpline Announces Launch of 24/7 Operations
StrongHearts Native Helpline Receives 10,000th Call
New Tribal Division Speaks To Needs Of Tribal Nations
StrongHearts Native Helpline receives 2020 Heroes In Health National Impact Award From National Indian Health Board
Native Advocacy Organizations Release Joint Statement Recognizing Domestic Violence Awareness Month This October
StrongHearts Native Helpline Honors October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month
SCOTUS Affirms Reservation Upholds Jurisdiciton to Protect Native Women
Stacking Up The Numbers
International Day Against Homophobia Commemorated
StrongHearts Native Helpline Announces Addition of Online Chat Sessions with Advocates