Types of Human Trafficking

United States’ Definition

Forced labor in the United States can include sex trafficking and/or labor trafficking since both utilize forced or compulsory labor under threat, fraud or coercion.  Most often though, U.S. activists reference forced labor when speaking about labor trafficking since sex trafficking is a separately defined crime.

According to the U.S. Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, labor trafficking is the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision or obtaining of a person for labor or services through the use of force, fraud or coercion for the purposes of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage or slavery (22 USC § 7102).


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Domestic Servitude

Employees working in private homes are forced or coerced into serving and/or fraudulently convinced that they have no option to leave.


Sex Trafficking

Women, men or children that are forced into the commercial sex industry and held against their will by force, fraud or coercion.


Forced Labor

Human beings are forced to work under the threat of violence and for no pay. These slaves are treated as property and exploited to create a product for commercial sale.


Bonded Labor

Individuals that are compelled to work in order to repay a debt and unable to leave until the debt is repaid. It is the most common form of enslavement in the world.


Child Labor

Any enslavement — whether forced labor, domestic servitude, bonded labor or sex trafficking — of a child.


Forced Marriage

Women and children who are forced to marry another without their consent or against their will.


on January 17 • by